An official journal of the Society for Biology of Reproduction and the Institute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research of Polish Academy of Sciences in Olsztyn

March 2015 (No. 1) Volume 15

The effects of superoxide dismutase addition to the transport medium on cumulus–oocyte complex apoptosis and IVF outcome in cats (Felis catus)

Natascia Cocchia a,1, Annunziata Corteggio a,1, Gennaro Altamura a,1, Simona Tafuri a,1, Silviana Rea a,1, Isabella Rosapane a,1, Alessandro Sica a,1, Francesco Landolfi b,1, Francesca Ciani a,1,*

a Department of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Productions – University of Naples Federico II, Via F. Delpino n. 1, 80137 Naples, Italy

b A.S.L., Naples 3 South, Italy

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The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of superoxide dismutase (SOD) addition to the ovary transport medium (4 °C, 3–72 h) on ovarian cell viability and apoptosis and in vitro embryo production (IVEP) in domestic cats. The ovaries collected from 76 mixed-breed domestic queens were randomly assigned to the control or SOD-treated groups and incubated for 3, 24, 48 or 72 h. The ovaries were then subjected to the following: (1) fixed in formalin to assess the incidence of apoptosis (fragmented DNA in situ detection kit), (2) stored at _196 °C in liquid nitrogen to evaluate the expression of the pro-apoptotic Bax gene and the anti-apoptotic Bcl-2 gene (RT-PCR), and (3) used to obtain the cumulus–oocyte complexes (COCs) in order to test the cell viability (carboxyfluorescein or trypan blue staining) and IVEP. The incidence of apoptosis appeared to be higher in the control compared with the SOD-treated ovaries. The ovarian expression of Bax was lower and the Bcl-2 expression was higher in the SOD-treated group compared with the control group. The presence of SOD in the transport medium increased the viability of COCs and IVEP compared with the control medium. In summary, the supplementation of the ovary transport medium with SOD reduced cellular apoptosis and enhanced COC survival and IVEP in domestic cats.

Reproductive Biology 2015, 15, 1: 56-64.

* Corresponding author: e-mail address: (F. Ciani).
1 All authors contributed equally to this work.