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Lopez-Casillas, F; Mendez, C; Alcantara, L; Escalona, R; Pedernera, E (2006)

TRANSFORMING GROWTH FACTOR BETA INHIBITS PROLIFERATION OF SOMATIC CELLS WITHOUT INFLUENCING GERM CELL NUMBER IN THE CHICKEN EMBRYONIC OVARY

CELL TISSUE RES 325(1):143-149
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The gonadal development of chicken embryo is regulated by hormones and growth factors. Transforming growth factor beta (TGF-beta) isoforms may play a critical role in the regulation of growth in chicken gonads. We have investigated the effect of the TGF-beta isoforms on the number of germ and somatic cells in the ovary of the chicken embryo. Ovaries were obtained from chicken embryos at 9 days of incubation. They were organ-cultured for 72 h in groups treated with TGF-beta 1, TGF-beta 2, soluble betaglycan, TGF-beta 1 plus soluble betaglycan, or TGF-beta 2 plus soluble betaglycan, and untreated (control). TGF-beta 1 and TGF-beta 2 diminished the somatic cell number in the ovary of the chicken embryo at this age by inhibiting the proliferation of the somatic cells without increasing apoptosis. On the other hand, TGF-beta 1 and TGF-beta 2 did not affect the number of germ cells in the cultured ovary. The capacity of TGF-beta 1 and TGF-beta 2 to diminish the number of somatic cells in the ovary was blocked with soluble betaglycan, a natural TGF-beta antagonist. However, changes in the location of germ cells within the ovary suggested that TGF-beta promoted the migration of the germ cells from the ovarian cortex to the medulla. Thus, TGF-beta affects germ and somatic cells in the ovary of the 9-day-old chicken embryo and inhibits the proliferation of somatic cells.