Epigenetic modifications and related mRNA expression during bovine oocyte in vitro maturation

S. E. Racedo, C. Wrenzycki, K. Lepikhov, D. Salamone, J. Walter, H. Niemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


The present study investigated the global pattern of two histone modifications and methylation of DNA during in vitro maturation of bovine oocytes retrieved from follicles of two different sizes (2 mm and 28 mm). The methylation status of histone H3 at position lysine K9 (H3K9 me2), the acetylation status of histone H4 at position lysine K12 (H4K12ac) and the methylation of DNA were assessed by immunocytochemistry. In parallel, the relative abundance of mRNAs coding for proteins specifically involved in reprogramming, including HLA-B associated transcript 8 (G9A), suppressor of variegation 3-9 homolog 1 (SUV39H1), the somatic isoform of DNA methyltransferase 1 (DNMT1), DNA methyltransferase 3b (DNMT3b) and zygote arrest 1 (ZAR1) was determined by RT-PCR. The -H3K9 me2 signal was present in the GV stage and remained detectable until the end of the maturation period. -H4K12ac antibody gave a stronger signal in GV and GVBD oocytes and markedly decreased after GVBD. The signal showing the methylation of DNA was present during the entire maturation period. The five transcripts showed a gene-specific expression profile. Results revealed the global patterns of H3K9 me2, H4K12ac, DNA methylation and the mRNA pool profiles of genes critically involved in epigenetic modifications during bovine oocyte maturation and their possible relationship with the acquisition of oocyte developmental competence and follicular development.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)738-748
Number of pages11
JournalReproduction, Fertility and Development
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Developmental competence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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