Reproduction (Cambridge, England)

Regulation of ovulatory genes in bovine granulosa cells: lessons from siRNA silencing of PTGS2.

PMID 25323036


Prostaglandin endoperoxide synthase-2 (PTGS2), tumour necrosis factor-alpha-induced protein-6 (TNFAIP6), pentraxin-3 (PTX3), epidermal growth factor-like factors: amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG) are essential for successful ovulation. In this study, we compared the induction of these ovulatory genes in bovine granulosa cells (GCs) in vivo (after LH surge) and in vitro (forskolin (FRS) treatment). These genes were markedly stimulated in GCs isolated from cows 21 h after LH-surge. In isolated GCs, FRS induced a distinct temporal profile for each gene. Generally, there was a good agreement between the in vivo and in vitro inductions of these genes except for PTX3. Lack of PTX3 induction in isolated GCs culture suggests that other follicular compartments may mediate its induction by LH. Next, to study the role of PTGS2 and prostaglandins (PGs) in the cascade of ovulatory genes, PTGS2 was silenced with siRNA. PTGS2 siRNA caused a marked and specific knockdown of PTGS2 mRNA and PGE2 production (70% compared with scrambled siRNA) in bovine GCs. Importantly, PTGS2 silencing also reduced AREG, EREG and TNFAIP6 mRNA levels but not PTX3. Exogenous PGE2 increased AREG, EREG and TNFAIP6 mRNA levels, further confirming that these genes are prostanoid dependent. A successful and specific knockdown of PTGS2 was also achieved in endometrial cells (EndoCs) expressing PTGS2. Then, cholesterol-conjugated PTGS2 (chol-PTGS2) siRNA that facilitates cells' entry was investigated. In EndoCs, but not in GCs, chol-PTGS2 siRNA succeeded to reduce PTGS2 and PGE2 levels even without transfection reagent. PTGS2 knockdown is a promising tool to critically examine the functions of PTGS2 in the reproductive tract.