Zygote (Cambridge, England)

Osteopontin is expressed in the oviduct and promotes fertilization and preimplantation embryo development of mouse.

PMID 25263084


Osteopontin (OPN) is a multifunctional phosphoprotein that is detected in various tissues, including male and female reproductive tracts. In this study, we evaluated OPN expression in mouse oviducts during the estrus cycle, and at days 1-5 of pregnancy and pseudopregnancy by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and immunohistochemistry. The mice oocytes, sperm and embryos were treated with different concentrations of anti-OPN antibody in vitro to detect the function of OPN in fertilization and preimplantation embryo development. OPN mRNA and protein expression in mouse oviducts were cyclic dependent throughout the estrous cycle, which was highest at estrous and lowest at diestrous. Such a phenomenon was consistent with the change in estrogen level in mice. The expression levels of OPN in mice oviduct of normal pregnancy and pseudopregnancy were significantly different, which indicated that OPN expression in mouse oviducts was depend on estrogen and preimplantation embryo. Furthermore, anti-OPN antibody treatment could reduce the rates of fertilization, cleavage and blastocyst formation in vitro in a dose-dependent way. Overall, our results indicated that the expression of OPN in mouse oviducts during the estrous cycle and early pregnancy is likely regulated by estrogen and the embryo, and OPN may play a vital role in oocyte fertilization and preimplantation embryo development.