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 Maimon, I., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel; Galiani, D., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel; Dekel, N., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

Resumption of meiosis in mammalian oocytes, defined as oocyte maturation, is stimulated by luteinizing hormone (LH). Fully grown oocytes can also mature spontaneously, upon their release from the ovarian follicle. However, growing oocytes fail to resume meiosis in vitro and the mechanism underlying their meiotic incompetence is unknown. It is commonly accepted that a drop in intraoocyte cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) resulting in the elevated activity of the oocyte-specific PDE3A leads to a decrease in cAMP content, essential for reinitiation of meiosis. We explored the regulation of these cyclic nucleotides and their degrading PDE3A in growing oocytes. Our research addressed the LH-induced rather than spontaneous oocyte maturation. We examined 16–21 as compared to 25-day-old, PMSG-primed rats, treated with the LH analog, hCG. The effect of LH was also examined ex vivo, in isolated ovarian follicles. We found that hCG failed to induce oocyte maturation and ovulation in the younger animals and that ovulation-associated genes were not upregulated in response to this gonadotropin. Furthemore, the drop of intraoocyte cGMP and cAMP observed in fully grown oocytes upon exposure of the ovary to LH, was not detected in growing oocytes. Interestingly, whereas the global expression of PDE3A in growing and fully grown oocytes is similar, a significantly lower activity of this enzyme was determined in growing oocytes. Our findings show that meiotic incompetence is associated with a relatively high oocyte cGMP concentration and a low activity of PDE3A, which in follicle-enclosed oocytes may represent the failure of the somatic follicle cells to respond to LH. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

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High cGMP and low PDE3A activity are associated with oocyte meiotic incompetence

 Maimon, I., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel; Galiani, D., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel; Dekel, N., Department of Biological Regulation, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

High cGMP and low PDE3A activity are associated with oocyte meiotic incompetence

Resumption of meiosis in mammalian oocytes, defined as oocyte maturation, is stimulated by luteinizing hormone (LH). Fully grown oocytes can also mature spontaneously, upon their release from the ovarian follicle. However, growing oocytes fail to resume meiosis in vitro and the mechanism underlying their meiotic incompetence is unknown. It is commonly accepted that a drop in intraoocyte cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) resulting in the elevated activity of the oocyte-specific PDE3A leads to a decrease in cAMP content, essential for reinitiation of meiosis. We explored the regulation of these cyclic nucleotides and their degrading PDE3A in growing oocytes. Our research addressed the LH-induced rather than spontaneous oocyte maturation. We examined 16–21 as compared to 25-day-old, PMSG-primed rats, treated with the LH analog, hCG. The effect of LH was also examined ex vivo, in isolated ovarian follicles. We found that hCG failed to induce oocyte maturation and ovulation in the younger animals and that ovulation-associated genes were not upregulated in response to this gonadotropin. Furthemore, the drop of intraoocyte cGMP and cAMP observed in fully grown oocytes upon exposure of the ovary to LH, was not detected in growing oocytes. Interestingly, whereas the global expression of PDE3A in growing and fully grown oocytes is similar, a significantly lower activity of this enzyme was determined in growing oocytes. Our findings show that meiotic incompetence is associated with a relatively high oocyte cGMP concentration and a low activity of PDE3A, which in follicle-enclosed oocytes may represent the failure of the somatic follicle cells to respond to LH. © 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

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