Crop Biotech Update

Increased Expression of FSH Decreases Fecundity in Transgenic Female Pigs

September 20, 2017

Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) regulates reproduction in mammals. Overexpression of the exogenous FSHα/β genes from Chinese Erhualian pigs improved female fertility of transgenic mice and male spermatogenesis ability of transgenic Large White boars. The team of Kai Jiang of Jiangxi Agricultural University in China investigated the impact of the exogenous FSHα/β genes on female reproductive performance of Large White pigs.

The transgenic gilts showed higher levels of serum FSH and FSHβ protein in their pituitary. The transgenic gilts were healthy and grew normally without significant differences as compared to wild types. However, these transgenics had lower number of born piglets than their wild type half sibs. The expression levels of FSHR, LHR, ESR1, and ESR2 were also significantly lower in the transgenics than in wild type gilts at the age of 300 days.

This study found that overexpressed FSHα/β transgenes could cause deterioration in fertility of female Large White pigs disturbing the expression of the endogenous reproduction-related genes in female pigs.

For more on this study, read the article in Transgenic Research.