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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2019

Differential gene expression in bovine endometrial epithelial cells after challenge with LPS; specific implications for genes involved in embryo maternal interactions

Guo, Yongzhi; van Schaik, Tom; Jhamat, Naveed; Niazi, Adnan; Chanrot, Metasu; Charpigny, Gilles; Valarcher, Jean Francois; Bongcam-Rudloff, Erik; Andersson, Goran; Humblot, Patrice


Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) expressed on the surface of Gram-negative bacteria activates pro-inflammatory pathways, dys-regulates the function of endometrial cells and is a key player in the mechanisms involved in endometritis. This study aimed to investigate the effects of LPS on bovine endometrial epithelial cells (bEEC) from whole transcriptome with a special focus on genes involved in embryo-maternal interactions. Following in vitro culture, bEEC from three cows were exposed to 0, 2, and 8 mu g/mL LPS for 24h. RNA samples extracted at 0 and 24 hours were analyzed by RNA sequencing (RNA-seq). At 24h, 2035 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified between controls and samples treated with 2 mu g/mL LPS. Gene ontology analysis showed that over-expressed DEGs were associated to immune response, response to stress and external stimuli, catalytic activity, and cell cycle. Genes associated with cell membrane and cell adhesion pathways were under-expressed. LPS induced changes in expression of specific genes related to embryo-maternal interactions including under-expression of eight members of the cadherin superfamily, over-expression of six members of the mucin family, and differential expression of a large set of genes binding the above molecules and of more than 20 transcripts coding for cyto-kines and their receptors. Type I interferon-tau dependent genes were also over-expressed. From a sub-set of 19 genes, (biological replicates of bEEC from cows taken at time 6 (n = 3), 24 (n = 6) and 48 hours (n = 3), and 2 technical replicates per sample) differential gene expression was confirmed by RT2-qPCR (r(2) between fold changes at 24 hours by RT2 qPCR and RNA-seq = 0.97). These results indicate that LPS affects the function of bEEC in many ways by differential transcription, glycolytic metabolism and oxidative stress. Many transcriptomic signatures related to implantation and embryo maternal interactions were strongly affected by LPS. These results pave the way for further studies to investigate the duration of these changes and their possible impact on endometrial function and fertility.

Published in

2019, Volume: 14, number: 9, article number: e0222081