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Spatial and pregnancy-related changes in the protein, amino acid, and carbohydrate composition of bovine oviduct fluid

Rodríguez-Alonso, Beatriz; Maillo, Veronica; Acuña, Omar Salvador; López-Úbeda, Rebeca; Torrecillas, Alejandro; Simintiras, Constantine A; Sturmey, Roger; Avilés, Manuel; Lonergan, Patrick; Rizos, Dimitrios


Beatriz Rodríguez-Alonso rodriguezalonso.b@gmail.comb.r.-a.

Veronica Maillo veronicamase@gmail.comv.m.

Omar Salvador Acuña

Rebeca López-Úbeda

Alejandro Torrecillas

Constantine A Simintiras c.simintiras@missouri.educ.a.s.

Manuel Avilés

Patrick Lonergan pat.lonergan@ucd.iep.l.

Dimitrios Rizos drizos@inia.esd.r.


© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. Knowledge of how the biochemical composition of the bovine oviduct is altered due to the oviduct anatomy or the presence of an embryo is lacking. Thus, the aim of this study was to assess the effect of (І) oviduct anatomy and (ІІ) embryo presence on oviductal fluid (OF) protein, amino acid, and carbohydrate composition. Cross-bred beef heifers (n = 19) were synchronized and those in standing estrus were randomly allocated to a cyclic (non-bred) or pregnant (artificially inseminated) group. All heifers were slaughtered on Day 3 after estrus. The oviducts ipsilateral to the corpus luteum from each animal were isolated, straightened and cut, separating ampulla and isthmus. Each portion was flushed with 500 μµl of PBS enabling recovery of the oocyte/embryo. Recovered unfertilized oocytes (cyclic group) and embryos (8-cell embryos; pregnant group) were located in the isthmus of the oviduct. Samples of flushing medium from the isthmus and ampulla were used for proteomic (n = 2 per group), amino acid (n = 5), and carbohydrate (n = 5) analysis. For proteomic analysis, total protein from cyclic and pregnant samples were labelled with different cyanine fluorescent probes and separated according to the isoelectric point using immobilized pH gradient strips (pH 3–10, 17 cm, Protean® IEF cell system, Bio Rad). Second dimension was performed in a polyacrylamide gel (12%) in the presence of SDS using a Protean II XL system (Bio Rad). Images were obtained with a Typhoon 9410 scanner and analyzed with Progenesis SameSpots software v 4.0. Amino acid content in the OF was determined by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Glucose, lactate, and pyruvate were quantified using microfluorometric enzyme-linked assays. For the proteomic assessment, the results of the image analysis were compared by ANOVA. For both amino acid and carbohydrate analyses, statistical analysis was carried out by 2-way ANOVA with the Holm-Sidak nonparametric post hoc analysis. On Day 3 post-estrus, OF composition varied based on (І) anatomical region, where isthmic metabolites were present in lower (i.e., lactate, glycine, and alanine) or higher (i.e., arginine) concentrations compared to the ampulla; and (ІІ) embryo presence, which was correlated with greater, arginine, phosphoglycerate kinase 1, serum albumin, α-1-antiproteinase and IGL@ protein concentrations. In conclusion, data indicate that the composition of bovine OF is anatomically dynamic and influenced by the presence of an early embryo.


Simintiras, C. A., López-úbeda, R., Rodríguez-Alonso, B., Maillo, V., Acuña, O. S., López-Úbeda, R., …Rizos, D. (2020). Spatial and pregnancy-related changes in the protein, amino acid, and carbohydrate composition of bovine oviduct fluid. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 21(5),

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 27, 2020
Online Publication Date Feb 29, 2020
Publication Date Mar 1, 2020
Deposit Date Mar 2, 2020
Publicly Available Date Mar 3, 2020
Journal International Journal of Molecular Sciences
Electronic ISSN 1422-0067
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 21
Issue 5
Article Number 1681
Keywords oviduct fluid; pregnancy; proteome; metabolome; bovine
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© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (

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