Expression of Lymphangiogenic vascular endothelial growth factor family members in bovine corpus luteum

B. Berisha, S. Schilffarth, R. Kenngott, F. Sinowatz, H. H.D. Meyer, D. Schams

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The aim of this study was to evaluate mRNA expression, protein concentration and localization of the assumedly important lymphangiogenic factors VEGFC and VEGFD and the receptor FLT4 in bovine corpora lutea (CL) during different physiological stages. In experiment 1, CL were collected in a slaughterhouse and stages (days 1-2, 3-4, 5-7, 8-12, 13-16, >18) of oestrous cycle and month <3, 3-5, 6-7 and >8 of pregnancy. In experiment 2, prostaglandin F2α (PGF)-induced luteolysis was performed in 30 cows, which were injected with PGF analogue on day 8-12 (mid-luteal phase), and CL were collected before and 0.5, 2, 4, 12, 24, 48 and 64 h after PGF injection. The mRNA expression was characterized by RT-qPCR. All three factors were clearly expressed and showed significant changes during different groups and periods examined in both experiments. Protein concentrations of VEGFD and FLT4 measured by ELISA were not detectable in early cyclic CL but increased to higher plateau levels during pregnancy. After PGF-induced luteolysis FLT4 protein showed an increase within 2-24 h after the injection. FLT4 localization by immunohistochemistry in the cytoplasm of luteal cells was relatively weak in early CL. It increased in late CL and especially in CL during pregnancy. During pregnancy, a positive FLT4 staining in both the nucleus and cytoplasm of lymphatic endothelial cells in peripheral tissue was observed. In conclusion, our results lead to the assumption that lymphangiogenic factors are produced and regulated in CL and may be involved in mechanisms regulating CL function, especially during pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)292-303
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Veterinary Medicine Series C: Anatomia Histologia Embryologia
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2013


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