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Prostaglandins (PGs) play a pivotal role in uterine reproductive process including maternal recognition of pregnancy, cell proliferation, and myometrium contractions in mammals. In this study, we investigated the immunolocalizations and expression levels of Prostaglandin E2 synthases cyclo-oxygenase (COX)-1 and COX-2, as well as one of PGE2 receptor subtypes 4 (EP4) in the uteri of the wild Daurian ground squirrels (Spermophilus dauricus) during the breeding and non-breeding seasons. Histologically, the thickness of endometrium: myometrium ratio in the uteri of the breeding season was higher than that of the non-breeding season. The immunostainings of COX-1, COX-2 and EP4 were observed in stromal cells, glandular cells and myometrium cells in the breeding and non-breeding seasons. The protein and mRNA expression levels of COX-1, COX-2 and EP4 were higher in the uteri of the breeding season than those of in the non-breeding season. The mean mRNA levels of COX-1, COX-2 and EP4 were positively correlated with uterine weights. In addition, the PGE2 concentration of uterine tissues as well as plasma PGE2, 17β-estradiol, progesterone, LH and FSH levels were also significantly higher in the breeding season compared to those of the non-breeding season. These results suggested that PGE2 might play an important autocrine or paracrine role in the regulation of seasonal changes in the uterine functions of the wild Daurian ground squirrels during the breeding and non-breeding seasons.
This article was published in the following journal.
Name: Prostaglandins & other lipid mediators
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