Exposure of oocytes to the fusarium toxins zearalenone and deoxynivalenol causes aneuploidy ans abnormal embryo development in pigs

H. Malekinejad, E.J. Schoevers, A.J.J.M. Daemen, C. Zijlstra, J. Fink-Gremmels, B. Colenbrander, B.A.J. Roelen

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    Fungi of the Fusarium species can infect food and feed commodities and produce the mycotoxins zearalenone (ZEA) and deoxynivalenol (DON). Since both toxins have been reported to reduce fertility, the mechanisms of ZEA and DON on inhibition of oocyte maturation were examined. Pig oocytes were matured in the presence of ZEA (a mycotoxin with estrogenlike activity), 17beta-estradiol, and DON (all 3.12 μmol/L). Zearalenone, 17beta-estradiol, and DON inhibited oocyte maturation and caused approximately 34% of the oocytes to form an aberrant spindle. Different ratios of ZEA:DON did not lead to a more severe inhibition of oocyte maturation. Both mycotoxins caused abnormal formation of the meiotic spindle. The developmental competence of oocytes matured in the presence of mycotoxins was further investigated after in vitro fertilization. Presence of ZEA (3.12 μmol/L) during maturation reduced the percentages of oocytes that cleaved and formed a blastocyst to about 12%, compared with 25% of control oocytes. Maturation in the presence of equimolar concentrations of DON was not compatible with development. The ploidy of blastomeres from blastocysts derived from mycotoxin-exposed oocytes was analyzed with fluorescent in situ hybridization. All blastocysts, even those from the control group, contained at least one blastomere with abnormal ploidy, but the variation in the percentages of aneuploid blastomeres was significantly larger in embryos from oocytes exposed to mycotoxins. It is concluded that ZEA and DON can lead to abnormal spindle formation, leading to less fertile oocytes and embryos with abnormal ploidy, and that the effects of ZEA and DON are not synergistic.
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Pages (from-to)840-847
    Number of pages8
    JournalBiology of Reproduction
    Publication statusPublished - 2007

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