Date of this Version
This was a UCARE project completed by Katie Griger during the academic year of fall 2015 through spring of 2016.
UCARE Poster session, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Research Fair, April 2016, Lincoln, NE.
A subpopulation of cows in the Physiology herd has been identified as subfertile due to sporadic or chronic anovulation. This decrease in fertility could be lost profits for farmers and raises questions about ovulation disorders in women. Granulosa cells, a type of cell that is essential to ovarian follicle development, was investigated to determine if high concentrations of a hormone, androstenedione, could impact the follicular environment enough to cause anovulation disorders. Previous studies suggested that excess androgen may decrease the number of functioning granulosa cells by preventing them from proliferating within the follicle. Fewer granulosa cells mean fewer cells that are available to convert androstenedione to estrogen; and estrogen is required for the development of the follicle and ovulation. This research experience determined that when primary granulosa cells are subjected to high concentrations of androstenedione the rate of proliferation decreases based on the reduced proliferation promoting genes within the cells. These tests were done on primary granulosa cells from bovine as well as an immortalized granulosa cell line from humans.