Transforming Growth Factor-Alpha in the Adult Bovine Ovary: Identification in Growing Ovarian Follicles1 Journal Articles uri icon

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  • The pituitary gonadotropins and gonadal steroids are required for normal follicular growth and development but neither has been shown to act directly as a granulosa cell mitogen in vitro. A number of polypeptide growth factors, however, are known to have pronounced mitogenic effects on the cells of the follicle. We have localized transforming growth factor-alpha (TGF-alpha), a potent mitogen, in bovine thecal cells via immunoperoxidase staining using a monoclonal antibody for TGF-alpha that does not cross-react with epidermal growth factor. TGF-alpha staining is most intense in the theca of follicles at the discrete physiological stages known to show rapid granulosa cell growth (small follicles of 0.7-2.0 mm diameter). Staining intensity for TGF-alpha declines in large preovulatory follicles, coincident with the known decline in granulosa cell mitosis. These studies provide further evidence for paracrine interactions in the ovary and show that TGF-alpha may play an important role in the regulation of follicular development in the adult bovine ovary.


  • Lobb, Derek
  • Kobrin, Michael S
  • Kudlow, Jeffrey E
  • Dorrington, Jennifer H

publication date

  • May 1, 1989