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Berisha, Bajram; Schams, Dieter; Rodler, Daniela; Sinowatz, Fred; Pfaffl, Michael W. (2016): Expression and localization of members of the thrombospondin family during final follicle maturation and corpus luteum formation and function in the bovine ovary. In: Journal of reproduction and development, Vol. 62, No. 5: pp. 501-510


The aim of this study was to characterize the expression patterns and localization of the thrombospondin family members (THBS1, THBS2) and their receptors (CD36 and CD47) in bovine ovaries. First, the antral follicles were classified into 5 groups based on the follicle size and estradiol-17beta (E2) concentration in the follicular fluid (< 0.5, 0.5–5, 5–40, 40–180 and >180 E2 ng/ml). Second, the corpus luteum (CL) was assigned to the following stages: days 1–2, 3–4, 5–7, 8–12, 13–16 and >18 of the estrous cycle and of pregnancy (month 1–2, 3–4, 6–7 and > 8). Third, the corpora lutea were collected by transvaginal ovariectomy before and 0.5, 2, 4, 12, 24, 48 and 64 h after inducing luteolysis by injecting a prostaglandin F2alpha analog. The mRNA expression of examined factors was measured by RT-qPCR, steroid hormone concentration by EIA, and localization by immunohistochemistry. The mRNA expression of THBS1, THBS2, CD36, and CD47 in the granulosa cells and theca interna was high in the small follicles and reduced in the preovulatory follicles. The mRNA expression of THBS1, THBS2, and CD47 in the CL during the estrous cycle was high, but decreased significantly during pregnancy. After induced luteolysis, thrombospondins increased significantly to reach the maximum level at 12 h for THBS1, 24 h for THBS2, and 48 h for CD36. The temporal expression and localization pattern of the thrombospondins and their specific receptors in the antral follicles and corpora lutea during the different physiological phases of the estrous cycle and induced luteolysis appear to be compatible with their inhibitory role in the control of ovarian angiogenesis.