The mechanism of 4-vinylcyclohexene diepoxide (VCD)-induced oocyte destruction in small preantral follicles of rats and mice has not been elucidated. This study examined the effects of daily dosing of female rats with VCD on protein synthesis and follicle viability. An investigation of granulosa cells as a target for VCD was also made. Small preantral follicles (25 to 100 μm) isolated from untreated immature rats (day 28) as well as from rats injected daily for 10 d with VCD (0.57 mmol/kg, IP) or vehicle control (sesame oil) were incubated for 3, 6, or 10 h in vitro with or without VCD. Viability (trypan blue dye exclusion) or protein synthesis (3H-leucine incorporation) in follicles was measured. Large preantral follicles (100 to 250 μm). isolated oocytes or granulosa cells from small preantral follicles, hepatocytes, and adrenal cells served as controls. Viability was not compromised in small follicles isolated from untreated or VCD-injected rats. However, following in vitro incubation of small preantral follicles with VCD, there was a significant decrease in viability by 6 h. This loss in viability was observed in granulosa cells and was even greater in follicles from dosed as compared with undosed animals. The various cell types were incubated in vitro with or without VCD for 3 h and the rate of protein synthesis was measured by 3H-leucine incorporation during the last hour of incubation. Incubation of small preantral follicles from untreated animals with VCD for 3 h produced significant inhibition in the rate of protein synthesis. This effect was reversed and significantly stimulated after 6 and 10 h of incubation with VCD. Follicles from animals that had been dosed daily with VCD for 10 d demonstrated similar inhibition of protein synthesis following 3 h in vitro incubation with VCD; however, unlike those from undosed rats, follicles from dosed rats did not recover from this inhibition after 6 or 10 h of in vitro incubation with VCD. In vitro incubation with VCD stimulated the rate of protein synthesis in large preantral follicles; however, no effect on the rate of protein synthesis was observed in isolated oocytes and granulosa cells, hepatocytes, or adrenal cells. These observations suggest that VCD affects follicular viability via an effect on granulosa cells and that daily dosing of rats with VCD makes small preantral follicles more susceptible to ovotoxicity by VCD.
- 4-vinylcyclohexene diepoxide (VCD)
- Oocyte destruction
- Protein synthesis
- Small preantral follicles
ASJC Scopus subject areas