KIRREL is differentially expressed in adipose tissue from ‘fertil+ and ‘fertil- cows: in vitro role in ovary?
We have previously shown that dairy cows carrying the ‘fertil–’ haplotype for one quantitative trait locus affecting female fertility located on the bovine chromosome three (QTL-F-Fert-BTA3) have a significantly lower conception rate and body weight after calving than cows carrying the ‘fertil+’ haplotype. Here, we compared by Tiling Array the expression of genes included in the QTL-F-Fert-BTA3 in ‘fertil+’ and ‘fertil–’ adipose tissue one week after calving when plasma non-esterified fatty acid concentrations were greater in ‘fertil–’ animals. We observed that thirty-one genes were overexpressed whereas twelve were under-expressed in ‘fertil+’ as compared to ‘fertil–’ cows (P < 0.05). By quantitative PCR and immunoblot we confirmed that adipose tissue KIRREL mRNA and protein were significantly greater expressed in ‘fertil+’ than in ‘fertil–’. KIRREL mRNA is abundant in bovine kidney, adipose tissue, pituitary, and ovary and detectable in hypothalamus and mammary gland. Its expression (mRNA and protein) is greater in kidney of ‘fertil+’ than ‘fertil–’ cows (P < 0.05). KIRREL (mRNA and protein) is also present in the different ovarian cells with a greater expression in granulosa cells of ‘fertil+’ than ‘fertil–’ cows. In cultured granulosa cells, recombinant KIRREL halved steroid secretion in basal state (P < 0.05). It also decreased cell proliferation (P < 0.05) and in vitro oocyte maturation (P < 0.05). These results were associated to a rapid increase in MAPK1/3 and MAPK14 phosphorylation in granulosa cells and to a decrease in MAPK1/3 phosphorylation in oocyte. Thus, KIRREL could be a potential metabolic messenger linking body composition and fertility.
Source: The journal of Reproductive Science