The reaggregation of normal granulosa-cumulus cells and mouse oocytes with polycystic ovarian syndrome in vitro: An experimental study


Background: The dialogue between oocytes and their surrounding cells plays a major role in the progress of oocyte meiosis and their developmental potential.

Objective: This study aimed to evaluate the effect of co-culture of normal granulosacumulus cells (GCCs) with oocytes from polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) mice.

Materials and Methods: Normal GCCs were collected from 10 virgin adult Naval Medical Research Institute female mice (30-35 gr, 7-8 wk old), and were cultured in an alpha-minimum essential medium supplemented with 5% fetal calf serum for 24-48 hr (1×106 cells/well). Then, germinal-vesicle oocytes from PCOS mice were cultured in the presence of cultured normal GCCs (experimental group) and without GCCs (control group). The maturation rate and quality of the PCOS oocytes were examined by evaluating TFAM and Cx43 gene expression (real-time PCR) and the connection among PCOS oocytes and normal GCCs after 24 hr of culture.

Results: The co-culture of normal GCCs and PCOS oocytes in the experimental group led to the formation of a complex called a PCOS oocyte-normal GCCs complex. The maturation rate of these complexes was significantly increased compared to that of the control group (p ≤ 0.001). A significant difference was also found in the expression of Cx43 (p ≤ 0.001) and TFAM (p < 0.05) genes in the experimental group compared with the control group. The connection between PCOS oocytes and normal GCCs was observed in the scanning electron microscope images.

Conclusion: Co-culture with normal GCCs improves the capacity of PCOS oocytes to enter meiosis, which may result in the promotion of assisted reproduction techniques.

Key words: PCOS, Co-culture, Granulosa-cumulus cells, IVM, Cx43.

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