Transgenerational beneficial effect of Arthrospira (Spirulina) platensis on the rabbit ovaries
Despite the well-known health properties of microalga Arthrospira (Spirulina) platensis, little is known about its effects on female reproduction. The aim of this study was to establish whether including A. platensis in the diet during sexual maturation has an effect on the folliculogenesis and expression patterns of growth factors as bone morphogenetic protein 15 (BMP15) and growth differential factor 9 (GDF9) in the ovaries of the mothers and F1 female offspring in rabbits. The research was conducted using 28 white New Zealand rabbits in total, and seven were individually treated with 350 mg kg-1 of A. platensis at 2 to 6 months of age, prior to the insemination. The morphometric evaluation of the ovaries, RT-PCR, and immunohistochemical analyses of GDF9 and BMP15 expression in the oocytes and cumulus cells of both generations was performed. Arthrospira platensis supplementation led to an increase in the weight of ovaries, in the density of the primary and secondary follicles in the ovaries of treated mothers and their F1 offspring, and in the live body weight of offspring born to the treated mothers. BMP15 expression levels in the oocytes and cumulus cells, and GDF9 expression in the oocytes of treated mothers were enhanced. This increase in BMP15 expression levels was shown to be inherited in the oocytes and cumulus cells of the F1 females born to treated mothers. These data suggests that the A. platensis-supplemented diet during the sexual maturation exerts transgenerational beneficial effects on the folliculogenesis in rabbits.
Publisher URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10811-018-1400-y