Modulation of imprinted gene expression following superovulation

Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology
Amanda L FortierJacquetta M Trasler


Although assisted reproductive technologies increase the risk of low birth weight and genomic imprinting disorders, the precise underlying causes remain unclear. Using a mouse model, we previously showed that superovulation alters the expression of imprinted genes in the placenta at 9.5days (E9.5) of gestation. Here, we investigate whether effects of superovulation on genomic imprinting persisted at later stages of development and assess the surviving fetuses for growth and morphological abnormalities. Superovulation, followed by embryo transfer at E3.5, as compared to spontaneous ovulation (controls), resulted in embryos of normal size and weight at 14.5 and 18.5days of gestation. The normal monoallelic expression of the imprinted genes H19, Snrpn and Kcnq1ot1 was unaffected in either the placentae or the embryos from the superovulated females at E14.5 or E18.5. However, for the paternally expressed imprinted gene Igf2, superovulation generated placentae with reduced production of the mature protein at E9.5 and significantly more variable mRNA levels at E14.5. We propose that superovulation results in the ovulation of abnormal oocytes with altered expression of imprinted genes, but that the coregulated genes of the imprinted g...Continue Reading


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