Characterization of the IGF2 Imprinted Gene Methylation Status in Bovine Oocytes during FolliculogenesisReport as inadecuate

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DNA methylation reprogramming occurs during mammalian gametogenesis and embryogenesis. Sex-specific DNA methylation patterns at specific CpG islands controlling imprinted genes are acquired during this window of development. Characterization of the DNA methylation dynamics of imprinted genes acquired by oocytes during folliculogenesis is essential for understanding the physiological and genetic aspects of female gametogenesis and to determine the parameters for oocyte competence. This knowledge can be used to improve in vitro embryo production IVP, specifically because oocyte competence is one of the most important aspects determining the success of IVP. Imprinted genes, such as IGF2, play important roles in embryo development, placentation and fetal growth. The aim of this study was to characterize the DNA methylation profile of the CpG island located in IGF2 exon 10 in oocytes during bovine folliculogenesis. The methylation percentages in oocytes from primordial follicles, final secondary follicles, small antral follicles, large antral follicles, MII oocytes and spermatozoa were 73.74 ± 2.88%, 58.70 ± 7.46%, 56.00 ± 5.58%, 65.77 ± 5.10%, 56.35 ± 7.45% and 96.04 ± 0.78%, respectively. Oocytes from primordial follicles showed fewer hypomethylated alleles 15.5% than MII oocytes 34.6% p = 0.039; spermatozoa showed only hypermethylated alleles. Moreover, MII oocytes were less methylated than spermatozoa p<0.001. Our results showed that the methylation pattern of this region behaves differently between mature oocytes and spermatozoa. However, while this region has a classical imprinted pattern in spermatozoa that is fully methylated, it was variable in mature oocytes, showing hypermethylated and hypomethylated alleles. Furthermore, our results suggest that this CpG island may have received precocious reprogramming, considering that the hypermethylated pattern was already found in growing oocytes from primordial follicles. These results may contribute to our understanding of the reprogramming of imprinted genes during bovine oogenesis.

Author: Anelise dos Santos Mendonça, Ana Luíza Silva Guimarães, Naiara Milagres Augusto da Silva, Alexandre Rodrigues Caetano, Margot



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