Vascular endothelial growth factor A isoforms modulate follicle development in peripubertal heifers independent of diet through diverse signal transduction pathways

Mohamed A. Abedal-Majed, Scott G. Kurz, Shelby A. Springman, Anthony K. McNeel, Harvey C. Freetly, Valerie Largen, Manjula Magamage, Kevin M. Sargent, Jennifer R. Wood, Robert A. Cushman, Andrea S. Cupp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Follicular progression during peripuberty is affected by diet. Vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGFA) induces follicle progression in many species; however, there are limited studies to determine if diet may alter the effects of angiogenic VEGFA165-stimulated follicle progression or antiangiogenic VEGFA165b follicle arrest. We hypothesized that diet affects the magnitude of angiogenic and antiangiogenic VEGFA isoform actions on follicular development through diverse signal transduction pathways. To test this hypothesis, beef heifers in our first trial received Stair-Step (restricted and refeeding) or control diets from 8 to 13 months of age. Ovaries were collected to determine follicle stages, measure vascular gene expression and conduct ovarian cortical cultures. Ovarian cortical cultures were treated with phosphate-buffered saline (control), 50 ng/ml VEGFA165, VEGFA165b, or VEGFA165 + VEGFA165b. The Stair-Step heifers had more primordial follicles (P < 0.0001), greater messenger RNA abundance of vascular markers VE-cadherin (P < 0.0001) and NRP-1 (P < 0.0051) than controls at 13 months of age prior to culture. After culture, VEGFA isoforms had similar effects, independent of diet, where VEGFA165 stimulated and VEGFA165b inhibited VEGFA165-stimulated follicle progression from early primary to antral follicle stages. In vitro cultures were treated with VEGFA isoforms and signal transduction array plates were evaluated. VEGFA165 stimulated expression of genes related to cell cycle, cell proliferation, and growth while VEGFA165b inhibited expression of those genes. Thus, VEGFA isoforms can act independently of diet to alter follicle progression or arrest. Furthermore, follicle progression can be stimulated by VEGFA165 and inhibited by VEGFA165b through diverse signal transduction pathways.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)680-692
Number of pages13
JournalBiology of reproduction
Volume102
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 13 2020

Keywords

  • VEGFA165
  • VEGFA165b
  • diet
  • follicle
  • heifer
  • in vitro culture
  • ovarian cortex
  • ovary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Cell Biology

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