In vivo gene expression in granulosa cells during pig terminal follicular development

TitleIn vivo gene expression in granulosa cells during pig terminal follicular development
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsBonnet, A, Le Cao, KA, San Cristobal, M, Benne, F, Robert-Granié, C, Law-So, G, Fabre, S, Besse, P, De Billy, E, Quesnel, H, Hatey, F, Tosser-Klopp, G
Date PublishedAug
Keywords*Gene Expression Regulation, Animals, Data Interpretation, Female, Gene Expression Profiling/methods, Glutathione Transferase/genetics, Granulosa Cells/cytology/*metabolism, In Situ Hybridization, Lipid Metabolism, Lipids/genetics, Messenger/analysis, Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis, Ovarian Follicle/*physiology, Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction, Ribosomal Proteins/genetics, RNA, Statistical, Swine/*metabolism

Ovarian antral follicular development is clearly dependent on pituitary gonadotrophins FSH and LH. Although the endocrine mechanism that controls ovarian folliculogenesis leading to ovulation is quite well understood, the detailed mechanisms and molecular determinants in the different follicular compartments remain to be clarified. The aim of this study was to identify the genes differentially expressed in pig granulosa cells along the terminal ovarian follicle growth, to gain a comprehensive view of these molecular mechanisms. First, we developed a specific micro-array using cDNAs from suppression subtractive hybridization libraries (345 contigs) obtained by comparison of three follicle size classes: small, medium and large antral healthy follicles. In a second step, a transcriptomic analysis using cDNA probes from these three follicle classes identified 79 differentially expressed transcripts along the terminal follicular growth and 26 predictive genes of size classes. The differential expression of 18 genes has been controlled using real-time PCR experiments validating the micro-array analysis. Finally, the integration of the data using Ingenuity Pathways Analysis identified five gene networks providing descriptive elements of the terminal follicular development. Specifically, we observed: (1) the down-expression of ribosomal protein genes, (2) the genes involved in lipid metabolism and (3) the down-expression of cell morphology and ion-binding genes. In conclusion, this study gives new insight into the gene expression during pig terminal follicular growth in vivo and suggested, in particular, a morphological change in pig granulosa cells accompanying terminal follicular growth.