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SMAD3 directly regulates cell cycle genes to maintain arrest in granulosa cells of mouse primordial follicles

Primordial follicles, consisting of granulosa cell (GC)-enveloped oocytes are maintained in a state of developmental arrest until activated to grow. The mechanism that operates to maintain this arrested state in GCs is currently unknown. Here, we show the TGFβ-activated transcription factor SMAD3 is expressed in primordial GC nuclei alongside the cell cycle proteins, cyclin D2...

Adiponectin and Its Receptors in the Ovary: Further Evidence for a Link between Obesity and Hyperandrogenism in Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), characterized by ovarian androgen excess, is the commonest endocrine disorder in women. Obesity increases androgen synthesis, a phenomenon attributed to the accompanying hyperinsulinemia. Our hypothesis was that adipokines, fat cell-derived hormones, play a direct role in modulating ovarian androgen secretion. Therefore, the aims of this study...

Culture environment modulates maturation and metabolism of human oocytes

Ruth Roberts 0 Stephen Franks 0 Kate Hardy 0 0 Department of Reproductive Science and Medicine, Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology, The Wolfson and Weston

Human primordial, primary and secondary ovarian follicles in long-term culture: effect of partial isolation

Ovarian cortical tissue, donated by 20 women aged 25–43 years during gynaecological laparoscopies or laparotomies, was first cultured for 7–9 days as tissue slices, 0.1–0.3 mm in thickness, in extracellular matrix, to initiate the growth of the primordial and primary follicles. It was then divided into two parts, one of which was cultured further as slices, and the other one used...

Expression of intercellular junctions during preimplantation development of the human embryo

A total of 74 human embryos were stained with gap junction protein specific anti-peptide antibodies and antibodies to the desmosomal protein desmoplakin to reveal the expression pattern of intercellular junctions during preimplantation development. Prior to implantation, the human embryo expresses predominantly connexin (Cx43)-containing gap junctions. Gap junctions were first...