Objective: Nulliparity and menopause are considered risk factors for ovarian cancer. Nulliparity represents a condition capable of affecting the expression levels of the pro-angiogenic factors and modulating the degree of phosphorylation of signals involved in endothelial cell proliferation. This experimental animal study involved a total of 40 CD1 female mice, young (4-months-old) and old (15-months-old), both parous and nulliparous, where the expression levels of VEGF, VEGFR2, ERK2, Akt and PTEN proteins were determined. Methods: Mice, called Mothers (M), were mated and sacrificed after the first pregnancy and lactation (Young, Y, n = 10) or at 15 month (Old, O, n = 10) of age, when they’re in menopause. The same protocol was adopted for the group of nulliparous mice, called Virgins (V), sacrificed without mating either young (YV, n = 10) or old (OV, n=10). Ovaries were collected and stored for Western blot analysis. The expression levels of VEGF, VEGFR2, ERK2, Akt and PTEN proteins were determined into the 4 groups. Results: VEGF content was always higher in V than in M, but no age-dependent increase of VEGF was recorded in V because of the high levels already present in the YV. VEGFR2 content was higher in V than in M, and was accumulated in OV. Akt and ERK2 were phosphorylated more efficiently in V than in M. PTEN was under phosphorylated in OV. Conclusion: The finding that in the ovaries of nulliparous (V) mice the expression levels of pro-angiogenic proteins are enhanced in comparison to parous (M) mice, contributes to explain epidemiological data by providing the first molecular explanation of the protective role of pregnancy on female health; the over-expression of specific pro-angiogenic proteins and their over-activity can contribute to explain the reason why the incidence of ovarian cancer in nulliparous women is higher than in parous ones.

DO NULLIPARITY AND MENOPAUSE MODULATE THE EXPRESSION LEVELS OF MAIN PRO-ANGIOGENIC FACTORS: VEGF, VEGFR2, AKT AND ERK2, IN THE MOUSE OVARY?

DI LUIGI, GIANLUCA;CECCONI, Sandra;IORIO, Roberto;ROSSI, Gianna;CARTA, Gaspare
2016

Abstract

Objective: Nulliparity and menopause are considered risk factors for ovarian cancer. Nulliparity represents a condition capable of affecting the expression levels of the pro-angiogenic factors and modulating the degree of phosphorylation of signals involved in endothelial cell proliferation. This experimental animal study involved a total of 40 CD1 female mice, young (4-months-old) and old (15-months-old), both parous and nulliparous, where the expression levels of VEGF, VEGFR2, ERK2, Akt and PTEN proteins were determined. Methods: Mice, called Mothers (M), were mated and sacrificed after the first pregnancy and lactation (Young, Y, n = 10) or at 15 month (Old, O, n = 10) of age, when they’re in menopause. The same protocol was adopted for the group of nulliparous mice, called Virgins (V), sacrificed without mating either young (YV, n = 10) or old (OV, n=10). Ovaries were collected and stored for Western blot analysis. The expression levels of VEGF, VEGFR2, ERK2, Akt and PTEN proteins were determined into the 4 groups. Results: VEGF content was always higher in V than in M, but no age-dependent increase of VEGF was recorded in V because of the high levels already present in the YV. VEGFR2 content was higher in V than in M, and was accumulated in OV. Akt and ERK2 were phosphorylated more efficiently in V than in M. PTEN was under phosphorylated in OV. Conclusion: The finding that in the ovaries of nulliparous (V) mice the expression levels of pro-angiogenic proteins are enhanced in comparison to parous (M) mice, contributes to explain epidemiological data by providing the first molecular explanation of the protective role of pregnancy on female health; the over-expression of specific pro-angiogenic proteins and their over-activity can contribute to explain the reason why the incidence of ovarian cancer in nulliparous women is higher than in parous ones.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11697/104478
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