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Endocrinology

Notch signaling is involved in ovarian follicle development by regulating granulosa cell proliferation.


PMID 21427220

Abstract

Notch signaling is an evolutionarily conserved pathway, which regulates cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. It has been reported that the members of Notch signaling are expressed in mammalian ovaries, but the exact functions of this pathway in follicle development is still unclear. In this study, primary follicles were cultured in vitro and treated with Notch signaling inhibitors, L-658,458 and N-[N-(3,5-Difluorophenacetyl)-l-alanyl]-S-phenylglycine t-butyl ester (DAPT). We found that the cultured follicles completely stopped developing after L-658,458 and DAPT treatment, most of the granulosa cells were detached, and the oocytes were also degenerated with condensed cytoplasma. Further studies demonstrated that the proliferation of granulosa cells was dependent on the Notch signaling. L-658,458 and DAPT treatment inhibited proliferation of in vitro cultured primary granulosa cells and decreased the expression of c-Myc. Lentivirus mediated overexpression of Notch intracellular domain 2, and c-Myc could promote the proliferation of granulosa cells and rescue the growth inhibition induced by L-658,458 and DAPT. In conclusion, Notch signaling is involved in follicular development by regulating granulosa cell proliferation.