Epidermal growth factor receptor activation by protein kinase C is necessary for FSH-induced meiotic resumption in porcine cumulus-oocyte complexes

Xiufen Chen, Bo Zhou, Jun Yan, Baoshan Xu, Ping Tai, Junxia Li, Shiming Peng, Meijia Zhang, Guoliang Xia
Journal of Endocrinology 2008, 197 (2): 409-19
It is proved that epidermal growth factor (EGF)-like factors mediate gonadotropin-induced rodent oocyte maturation via EGF receptor (EGFR). However, the detail kinetics and signal pathway between FSH and EGF/EGFR is not clear in large animals. In the present study, we investigated the roles of EGFR and protein kinase C (PKC) in FSH-induced porcine oocyte meiotic resumption. Porcine cumulus-oocyte complexes were cultured in NCSU37 medium containing 10% porcine follicular fluid and germinal vesicle breakdown (meiotic resumption) was detected after different treatments. The results showed that EGF-like factor amphiregulin (AR) and EGFR mRNA were expressed in porcine cumulus cells, but not oocytes. FSH significantly induced AR mRNA expression with maximum at 4 h and activated EGFR phosphorylation at 8 h. AR (1-100 ng/ml) dose-dependently induced meiosis resumption of porcine oocyte. The specific EGFR inhibitor, AG1478, but not AG43 (the inactive analog of AG1478), completely blocked FSH, EGF, and AR-induced oocyte meiotic resumption; the inhibitory effect of AG1478 on FSH action gradually decreased when the inhibitor was added at 6 h or later and disappeared when it was added at 11 h; EGF reversed the inhibitory effect on FSH when AG1478 was added within 6 h. FSH triggered porcine oocyte meiotic resumption (at 20 h) later than that of EGF and AR (at 18 h). All these results supported that endogenously produced EGFR activator(s), possibly AR (maximum at 4 h) and EGFR activation (began at 6 h and finished within 11 h), in cumulus cells is necessary for FSH-induced porcine oocyte meiotic resumption (began at 18 h). Furthermore, PKC activator PMA mimicked but PKC inhibitor chelerythrine chloride inhibited FSH action, and AG1478 also suppressed PMA-induced porcine oocyte meiotic resumption. These data together suggested that EGFR activation, by PKC signal pathway, participates in FSH-induced porcine oocyte meiotic resumption.

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