Reproduction, Fertility and Development, vol.34, no.6, pp.498-515, 2022 (SCI-Expanded)
© 2022 CSIRO. All rights reserved.Heat shock proteins (HSP) are significant regulators of cell proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. HSP participate in ovarian physiology through proliferative and apoptotic mechanisms and the modulation of sex steroid receptor functions. We investigated whether the expression and localisation patterns of HSP in the domestic cat ovary vary with the oestrous cycle stage. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed cell type-specific localisation patterns of HSPD1/HSP60, HSPA/HSP70, HSPC/HSP90 and HSPH/HSP105 in several ovarian cells of the domestic cat, including oocytes, follicular (granulosa and theca cells) and luteal cells, stromal and thecal interstitial cells, stromal cells, and vascular endothelial and smooth muscle cells during the anoestrous, follicular and luteal phases of the oestrous cycle. Western blot results showed that the expression of three HSP (HSPD1/HSP60, HSPA/HSP70 and HSPH/HSP105) varied with the oestrous cycle stage. While the maximal expression of HSPD1/HSP60 and HSPH/HSP105 occurred during the luteal phase, the expression of HSPA/HSP70 was minimal. The expressions of HSPA/HSP70 and HSPH/HSP105 were low during the follicular phase compared to the anoestrous phase. In conclusion, the alterations that occur in the expression of HSP in the domestic cat ovary during the different stages of the oestrous cycle imply that these proteins participate in the regulation of ovarian function under different physiological conditions.