The newly formed corpus luteum (CL) develops rapidly and has the features of active vascularization and mitosis of steroidogenic cells. Such local mechanisms must be strictly regulated by the complex relationship between angiogenic growth factors and vasoactive peptides such as angiotensin (Ang) II, atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP), and endothelin (ET)-1. Thus, the objective of the present study was to determine 1) the changes in vasoactive peptides and progesterone (P) concentrations within the developing CL, along with the changes in concentration in ovarian venous plasma (OVP) and jugular venous plasma (JVP) in the cow, 2) the effects of CL exposure to vasoactive peptides on Ang II and P secretion, and 3) the expression of mRNA for ANP type C receptor in the bovine CL and endothelial cells (ETC) from bovine developing CL. A microdialysis system (MDS) was surgically implanted into multiple CL of six cows on Day 3 after a GnRH injection that induced superovulation, and a catheter was simultaneously inserted into the ovarian vein. The Ang II concentration in OVP was higher than that in JVP throughout the experiment, while the intraluteal release of Ang II was stable. During the experimental period, the concentrations of other vasoactive peptides (ANP and ET-1) showed no clear changes in plasma and were below detectable levels in the MDS perfusate. Exposure of CL to Ang II using the MDS stimulated P release, while exposure to ANP enhanced Ang II release within the developing CL. However, ET-1 had no effect on either P or Ang II release. The expression of mRNA for ANP type C receptor was mainly observed in early CL and ETC. The results suggest that the ET-Ang-ANP system in the preovulatory follicle switches to an Ang-ANP system to enhance both the angiogenesis and steroidogenesis that are actively occurring in developing CL.
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