Obstetrics & Gynaecology Publications

Characterization of a bovine cDNA encoding citrate synthase, and presence of citrate synthase mRNA during bovine pre-attachment development.

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Molecular reproduction and development





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Citrate synthase is a key regulatory metabolic enzyme that catalyzes the first step in the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle, the synthesis of citrate from acetyl coenzyme A and oxaloacetate. Aerobic metabolism via the TCA cycle is high in bovine embryos at the 4-cell stage then decreases until the compact morula stage before increasing at the expanded blastocyst stage. This study characterizes the presence of citrate synthase mRNA in bovine pre-attachment embryos to determine if a variation in mRNA transcript expression patterns is associated with previous reports of the patterns of TCA cycle activity. The reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) method was used to detect citrate synthase mRNA from the 1-cell to blastocyst stage of bovine embryo development, and in embryos cultured under either an atmosphere of 5% CO(2) in air or 5% CO(2)/5% O(2)/90%N(2). The nucleotide sequence encoding citrate synthase was determined from bovine heart cDNA by the rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) technique. This 1455-bp nucleotide fragment contained an open reading frame that encoded a deduced protein of 466 amino acids. The bovine nucleotide sequence was 92.1% and 93.8% identical to the human and porcine coding sequence, respectively. The amino acid sequence predicted from the bovine sequence is 95.1% identical to the human sequence and 96.3% identical to the porcine sequence. The porcine sequence contains a stop codon that results in a peptide truncated by 2 amino acids. The detection of citrate synthase transcripts from the 1-cell to blastocyst stage demonstrates that the decrease in TCA cycle activity observed following the 4-cell stage is not associated with an absence of citrate synthase mRNA.

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