Angiotensin II (AGT-2) induces follicular prostaglandin release in a number of species and ovulation in rabbits. Conversely, AGT-2 antagonists block ovulation in cattle. To determine the mechanism of action of AGT-2, we used a bovine granulosa cell model in which luteinizing hormone (LH) increased the expression of genes essential for ovulation in a time- and dose-dependent manner. The addition of AGT-2 to LH-stimulated cells significantly increased abundance of prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2) mRNA and protein, whereas AGT-2 alone had no effect. Upstream of PTGS2, AGT-2 increased abundance of mRNA encoding the epidermal growth factor-like ligands amphiregulin (AREG) and epiregulin (EREG) at 6 h posttreatment and abundance of a disintegrin and metalloprotease 17 (ADAM17), a sheddase, within 3 h of treatment. Inhibiting sheddase activity abolished the stimulatory effect of AGT-2 on AREG, EREG, and PTGS2 mRNA. The addition of selective AGT-2 antagonists to cells stimulated with LH plus AGT-2 demonstrated that AGT-2 did not act through the type 1 receptor and did not increase mitogen-activated protein kinase 3/1 phosphorylation. Combined with previous data from studies in vitro, we conclude that AGT-2 is an essential cofactor for LH in the early increase of ADAM expression/activity that induces the cascade of events leading to ovulation.
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Vol. 85 • No. 6