Somatic cells regulate maternal mRNA translation and developmental competence of mouse oocytes

Jing Chen, Simona Torcia, Fang Xie, Chih-Jen Lin, Hakan Cakmak, Federica Franciosi, Kathleen Horner, Courtney Onodera, Jun S. Song, Marcelle I. Cedars, Miguel Ramalho-Santos, Marco Conti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Germ cells divide and differentiate in a unique local microenvironment under the control of somatic cells. Signals released in this niche instruct oocyte reentry into the meiotic cell cycle. Once initiated, the progression through meiosis and the associated programme of maternal messenger RNA translation are thought to be cell autonomous. Here we show that translation of a subset of maternal mRNAs critical for embryo development is under the control of somatic cell inputs. Translation of specific maternal transcripts increases in oocytes cultured in association with somatic cells and is sensitive to EGF-like growth factors that act only on the somatic compartment. In mice deficient in amphiregulin, decreased fecundity and oocyte developmental competence is associated with defective translation of a subset of maternal mRNAs. These somatic cell signals that affect translation require activation of the PI(3)K-AKT-mTOR pathway. Thus, mRNA translation depends on somatic cell cues that are essential to reprogramme the oocyte for embryo development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1415-+
Number of pages17
JournalNature Cell Biology
Volume15
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013

Keywords

  • GROWTH-FACTOR NETWORK
  • LARGE GENE LISTS
  • IN-VITRO
  • THERAPEUTIC TARGET
  • GRANULOSA-CELLS
  • AURORA-A
  • MATURATION
  • CANCER
  • TPX2
  • EXPRESSION

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