Human Blepharophimosis/ptosis/epicanthus inversus syndrome (BPES) type I is an autosomal dominant disorder associated with premature ovarian failure (POF) caused by mutations in FOXL2, a winged-helix/forkhead domain transcription factor. Although it has been shown that FOXL2 is expressed in adult ovaries, its function during folliculogenesis is not known. Here, we show that the murine Foxl2 gene is essential for granulosa cell differentiation and ovary maintenance. In Foxl2(lacZ) homozygous mutant ovaries granulosa cells do not complete the squamous to cuboidal transition leading to the absence of secondary follicles and oocyte atresia. We further demonstrate that activin-betaA and anti-Mullerian inhibiting hormone expression is absent or strongly diminished in Foxl2(lacZ) homozygous mutant ovaries. Unexpectedly, two weeks after birth most if not all oocytes expressed Gdf9 in Foxl2(lacZ) homozygous mutant ovaries, indicating that nearly all primordial follicles have already initiated folliculogenesis at this stage. This activation, in the absence of functional granulosa cells, leads to oocyte atresia and progressive follicular depletion. In addition to providing a molecular mechanism for premature ovarian failure in BPES, these results suggest that granulosa cell function is not only crucial for oocyte growth but also to maintain follicular quiescence in vivo.
We have not found any resources mentioned in this publication.
SciCrunch® is a data sharing and display platform. Anyone can create a custom portal where they can select searchable subsets of hundreds of data sources, brand their web pages and create their community. SciCrunch® will push data updates automatically to all portals on a weekly basis. User communities can also add their own data to SciCrunch®, however this is not currently a free service.