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Research article2018Peer reviewed

Elevated non-esterified fatty acids impair survival and promote lipid accumulation and pro-inflammatory cytokine production in bovine endometrial epithelial cells

Chankeaw, W.; Guo, Y. Z.; Bage, R.; Svensson, A.; Andersson, G.; Humblot, P.


Elevated non-esterified fatty acids (NEFAs) are associated with negative effects on bovine theca, granulosa and oviductal cells but the effects of NEFAs on bovine endometrial epithelial cells (bEECs) are not as well documented. The objective of this study was to define the effects of NEFAs on bEECs. Postprimary bEECs were treated with 150, 300 or 500 mu M of either palmitic acid (PA), stearic acid (SA) or oleic acid (OA) or a mixture of NEFAs (150 mu M of each FA) or 0.5% final concentration of vehicle ethanol (control). Viability and proliferation of bEECs exposed to 150 mu M of each NEFA or a mixture of NEFAs were unaffected. Increased lipid accumulation was found in all treated groups (P < 0.01). In cells exposed to 500 mu M of each NEFA and 300 mu M PA decreased cell viability (P < 0.001), proliferation (P < 0.05) and increased apoptosis (P < 0.05) were observed. Treatment with 500 mu M OA, PA and SA had the strongest effects on cell viability, proliferation and apoptosis (P < 0.05). Treatment with PA and OA increased interleukin-6 (IL-6) concentrations (P < 0.05), whereas only the highest concentration of PA, OA and SA stimulated IL-8 production (P < 0.05). These results suggest that high concentrations of NEFAs may impair endometrial function with more or less pronounced effects depending on the type of NEFA and time of exposure.


apoptosis; cytokines; endometrium; proliferation

Published in

Reproduction, Fertility and Development
2018, Volume: 30, number: 12, pages: 1770-1784