Temporal expression and localization of vascular endothelial growth factor family members in the bovine uterus during peri-implantation period

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine endometrial mRNA expression patterns and uterine protein localizations of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)ligands (VEGFA, VEGFB, VEGFC, and VEGFD)and their receptors (VEGFR1, soluble VEGFR1 (sVEGFR1), VEGFR2, and VEGFR3)during the peri-implantation period in cows. The number of blood and lymphatic vessels in the bovine uterus was also investigated. Bovine uterine tissues were collected from pregnant animals on days 15, 18, and 27 after artificial insemination and from non-pregnant animals on days 15 and 18 of the estrous cycle (day 0 = day of estrus). The mRNA expression level of VEGFA, VEGFR1, sVEGFR1, and VEGFR3 were higher on day 18 than on day 15 in the non-pregnant group. On day 18, the levels of mRNA expression of these genes were higher in the non-pregnant group than in the pregnant group. VEGFB mRNA expression levels was higher on day 15 than on days 18 and 27 of gestation and was higher in the pregnant group than in the non-pregnant group on day 15. Using immunohistochemistry, VEGF ligands and their receptors were found in luminal epithelium, glandular epithelium, stroma, and blood vessels of the endometrium. In addition, VEGFA, VEGFD, and VEGFR3 were also detected in the uterine myometrium. In the pregnant group, the number of blood vessels in the endometrium increased from day 15 to 18 and was greater than that of the non-pregnant group on day 18. Our results demonstrate that the VEGF family is expressed and regulated in the bovine uterus during the peri-implantation period, which may be associated with uterine functions, including vascular remodeling in maternal recognition of pregnancy and implantation.

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Hayashi, K. G., Hosoe, M., Fujii, S., Kanahara, H., & Sakumoto, R. (2019). Temporal expression and localization of vascular endothelial growth factor family members in the bovine uterus during peri-implantation period. Theriogenology, 133, 56–64. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.theriogenology.2019.04.021

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