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Zhiwei Niu, Liming Zheng, Siyu Wu, Hailong Mu, Fanglin Ma, Wencong Song, Haijing Zhu, Jiang Wu, Xin He and Jinlian Hua

Spermatogonia stem cells (SSCs), also named the male germline stem cells (mGSCs), which is located at the base of the seminiferous tubules of testis, is the basis for generating sperm steadily in male animals. Currently, there are some preliminary study on the self-renewal and differentiation of SSCs, but further mechanism, especially in large animals, has not been clearly understood. Ras/ERK1/2 pathway is widely distributed in multiple cells in vivo. It plays an important role in cell proliferation, differentiation and so on. However, the study on the function for the self-renewal of dairy goats SSCs has not been investigated. In this study, the dairy goat SSCs characterization were evaluated by semi-RT-PCR, alkaline phosphatase (AP) staining, and immunofluorescence staining. Then, Ras/ERK1/2 pathway was blocked by specific MEK1/2 inhibitor PD0325901. We analyzed the proliferation by cell number, cell growth curve, Brdu incorporation assay, and cell cycle analysis. The results showed that the proliferation was significantly inhibited by PD0325901. Cell apoptosis induced by blocking the Ras/ERK1/2 pathway was analyzed by TUNEL. The expression of ETV5 and BCL6B, the downstream gene of Ras/ERK1/2 pathway, was downregulated. This study suggest that the Ras/ERK1/2 pathway plays a critical role in maintaining the self-renewal of dairy goat SSCs via regulation of ETV5 and BCL6B. This study laid a foundation for insights into the mechanism of SSCs self-renewal comprehensively.

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Xiaoyan Li, Jinling Zhu, Jie Tian, Dongmei Li, Xiaodong Han and Jiang Wu

Health risk of human exposure to microcystin-leucine arginine (MC-LR) has drawn more and more attention in recent years. In the present study, MC-LR inhibited miR-3473g expression of mouse granulosa cells both in vitro and in vivo. By dual-luciferase reporter assay, we confirmed miR-3473g is able to bind the 3′-UTR of StAR protein (StAR) mRNA and suppress StAR expression. Thus, downregulation of miR-3473g after MC-LR exposure led to StAR overexpression. Excessive StAR probably transported much more cholesterol into the inner membrane of the mitochondria and finally resulted in overproduction of progesterone. Our results revealed that MC-LR exposure was associated with premature luteinization of granulosa cells and may adversely affect women’s fertility.

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Xue-Min Qiu, Zhen-Zhen Lai, Si-Yao Ha, Hui-Li Yang, Li-Bing Liu, Yan Wang, Jia-Wei Shi, Lu-Yu Ruan, Jiang-Feng Ye, Jiang-Nan Wu, Qiang Fu, Xiao-Fang Yi, Kai-Kai Chang and Ming-Qing Li

Immune cells and cytokines have important roles in the pathogenesis of endometriosis. However, the production and role of cytokines of T helper type 1 (Th1) and Th2 cells in the progress of endometriosis have remained to be fully elucidated. The present study reported that the interferon (IFN)-γ levels and the percentage of IFN-γ+CD4+ cells were significantly increased in the peritoneal fluid (PF) at the early stage and maintained at a higher level at the advanced stage of endometriosis; furthermore, interleukin (IL)-10 and IL-10+CD4+ cells were elevated in the advanced stage of endometriosis. In addition, IL-2 levels in the PF at the advanced stage of endometriosis were elevated and negatively associated with IFN-γ expression. In a co-culture system of ectopic endometrial stromal cells (ESCs) and macrophages, elevated IL-2 was observed, and treatment with cytokines IL-2 and transforming growth factor-β led to upregulation of the ratio of IL-2+ macrophages. IL-27-overexpressing ESCs and macrophages were able to induce a higher ratio of IL-10+CD4+ T cells. Blocking of IL-2 with anti-IL-2 neutralizing antibody led to upregulation of the ratio of IFN-γ+CD4+ T cells in the co-culture system in vitro. Recombinant human IL-10 and IFN-γ promoted the viability, invasiveness and transcription levels of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)2, MMP9, and prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 of ESCs, particularly combined treatment with IL-10 and IFN-γ. These results suggest that IL-2 and IL-27 synergistically promote the growth and invasion of ESCs by modulating the balance of IFN-γ and IL-10 and contribute to the progress of endometriosis.