Administration of nerve growth factor-β to heifers with a pre-ovulatory follicle enhanced luteal formation and function and promoted LH release.
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The objective of this study was to determine the effects of bovine nerve growth factor-β (NGF) on pre-ovulatory follicle vascular area, LH release, ovulation, and luteal function when administered systemically to heifers. Post-pubertal Holstein heifers (n = 12) received an intravaginal progesterone-releasing device (CIDR) and GnRH agonist (100 μg IM). The CIDR was removed 5 d later, and heifers were given dinoprost (25 mg IM) at CIDR removal and 24 h later, followed by a second dose of GnRH agonist 48 h later. Heifers were randomly assigned to treatments using a cross-over design. For example, heifers assigned to NGF (250 μg reconstituted in 12 mL PBS IM) in replicate 1 were assigned to control (12 mL PBS IM) in replicate 2. Transrectal ultrasonography was performed before treatment and repeated every 4 h up to 32 h to determine the pre-ovulatory follicle diameter, vascular area, and ovulation. Serum samples were obtained to assess LH concentrations during the periovulatory period and every 2 d post-ovulation for measuring progesterone concentrations. A subset of heifers had luteal biopsies performed on days 9 (n = 6 per treatment) and 14 (n = 6 per treatment) post-ovulation to count luteal cell numbers and measure relative mRNA abundance for steroidogenic and angiogenic enzymes and LH receptor. Treatment with NGF increased pre-ovulatory follicle diameter (P = 0.02) and serum LH concentrations (P = 0.03) but did not affect time to ovulation (P = 0.42). Heifers treated with NGF had increased serum progesterone concentrations in the subsequent luteal phase (P = 0.03), but no change in vascular area of the follicle (P = 0.16) or CL (P = 0.20). Heifers treated with NGF had a greater number of small luteal cells (P < 0.01) and a tendency for increased LH receptor (LHR) mRNA abundance in the CL (P = 0.10). There was also increased steroidogenic acute regulatory protein (STAR; P = 0.05) and a tendency for increased cytochrome P450 family 11 (CYP11A1; P = 0.10) mRNA abundance in the CL of NGF-treated heifers. There was decreased prostaglandin E2 synthase (PGES; P = 0.03) and its receptor (PGER; P = 0.05) mRNA abundance and a tendency for decreased cytochrome P450 family 17 subfamily A member 1 (CYP17A1; P = 0.08) and hydroxysteroid 17-beta dehydrogenase (HSD17B; P = 0.06) mRNA abundance in the CL of NGF-treated heifers. Administration of NGF improved CL function in heifers potentially as a result of increased LH release.
author list (cited authors)
Stewart, J. L., Stella, S., Cunha, L. L., Dias, N. W., Canisso, I. F., Mercadante, V., ... Lima, F. S.
complete list of authors
Stewart, Jamie L||Stella, Stephanie||Cunha, Laís L||Dias, Nicholas W||Canisso, Igor F||Mercadante, Vitor RG||Cardoso, Rodolfo C||Williams, Gary L||Pohler, Ky G||Lima, Fabio S