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Relationship Between Apoptosis and Proliferation in Granulosa and Theca Cells of Cystic Follicles in Sows

Authors

  • Y-L Sun,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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    • Co-first authors.

  • J Zhang,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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    • Co-first authors.

  • Z-G Ping,

    1. College of Veterinary Medicine, China Agricultural University, Beijing, China
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  • C-Q Wang,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
    2. Liaoning Medical University, Jinzhou, Liaoning Province, China
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  • Y-F Sun,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
    2. College of Animal Science and Technology, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun, China
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  • L Chen,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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  • X-Y Li,

    1. Institute of Military Veterinary, Academy of Military Medical Sciences, Changchun, China
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  • C-J Li,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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  • X-L Zhu,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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  • Z Liu,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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  • W Zhang,

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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  • X Zhou

    1. College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, Jilin Province, China
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Author’s address (for correspondence): X Zhou, College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, and Jilin Provincial Key Laboratory of Animal Embryo Engineering, the Center for Animal Embryo Engineering of Jilin Province, Jilin University, 5333 Xi’an Avenue, Changchun, Jilin Province 130062, China. E-mail: xzhou65@vip.sina.com

Contents

To investigate the causes of the occurrence and persistence of porcine cystic follicles, we evaluated the apoptosis and proliferation of follicular cells in these cysts. Apoptotic frequencies were examined by TUNEL assay and the expression of apoptosis regulators (XIAP, bax, bc1-2 and caspase-3) by immunohistochemistry, Western blotting and real-time quantitative PCR; cell proliferation activity was evaluated by PCNA immunohistochemistry and proliferation of in vitro cultured granulosa and theca cells. The low apoptotic frequency and weak proliferative activity were found in cystic follicles. Low frequency of apoptosis might be associated with decreased amounts of apoptotic-related factors (bax and caspase-3) and increased amounts of anti-apoptotic factors (XIAP and bcl-2) in cystic follicles. Significantly lower proliferation activity was detected in granulosa and theca cells from cystic follicles, and lesser PCNA-positive cells were found in cystic follicles. Our results indicate that the programmed cell death and cell proliferation system were altered in cystic follicles. The disorder between apoptosis and proliferation was responsible for maintaining a static condition without degeneration, which leads to the long-term persistence of follicles. These findings provide important novel insights into the pathogenesis of follicular cysts in sows.

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