Vitellogenin-associated maternal transfer of exogenous and endogenous ligands in the estuarine fish, Fundulus heteroclitus
Sequestration of large quantities of vitellogenin (VTG) is critical for proper oocyte development in most oviparous vertebrates. While previous studies have shown a general correlation between oocyte growth and the accumulation of various exogenous and endogenous ligands, few studies have attempted to elucidate the role VTG plays in this maternal transfer. In the present study, we have demonstrated that oocytic accumulation of [3H]-2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (3H-TCDD) and [14C]-benzo(a)pyrene (14C-BaP) by gravid Fundulus heteroclitus is directly correlated with oocyte maturational status. A positive correlation was observed between oocyte maturational state (size) and both total quantity (total pmoles) as well as concentration (pmoles/g tissue) of TCDD and BaP. Further, the bi-phasic accumulation of both TCDD and BaP mirrors that previously observed for protein sequestration by cultured Fundulus oocytes. Additionally, both TCDD and BaP were associated with VTG in vivo. HPLC analysis of serum extracts has shown that VTG associates with both parent BaP and BaP metabolites. Studies with 125I-T4 (thyroxine) also suggest that this critical hormone also associates with VTG in vivo. Ongoing studies are examining the VTG-associated transport and oocytic sequestration of 125I-T4 in gravid Fundulus. Copyright (C) 2000.
Monteverdi, GH; Di Giulio, RT
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