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Mol Reprod Dev. 2009 Dec;76(12):1200-7. doi: 10.1002/mrd.21097.

Phospholipase Czeta mRNA expression and its potency during spermatogenesis for activation of quail oocyte as a sperm factor.

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Department of Applied Molecular Biosciences, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Aichi, Japan.


This study was conducted to investigate the role of a sperm-borne compound in oocyte activation in special reference to the time when oocyte activation is required by testicular cells during spermatogenesis in quail. First, effects of a microinjection of quail sperm extract (SE) and quail phospholipase Czeta (PLCzeta) cRNA into quail oocytes were assessed by observation of pronuclear formation and cytoplasmic segmentation, respectively. Secondly, the effects of a microinjection of round spermatids with or without PLCzeta cRNA into quail oocytes were studied by observation of development. When the oocytes were injected with SE at 0.13 mg protein/ml, both pronuclear formation and cytoplasmic segmentation were optimally induced. However, pronuclear formation was blocked when SE was pretreated with heat or when the oocyte was pretreated with BAPTA (a Ca(2+) chelator) before SE injection. On the other hand, when the oocytes were injected with PLCzeta cRNA at 60 microg/ml, not only pronuclear formation but also cytoplasmic segmentation were optimally induced. However, PLCzeta cRNA-induced pronuclear formation was blocked by pretreatment with cycloheximide (an inhibitor of protein synthesis) or with BAPTA. Most interestingly, round spermatids alone cannot induce blastodermal development but microinjection of a round spermatid with PLCzeta cRNA can induce development. In addition, RT-PCR revealed that PLCzeta mRNA is expressed in elongated spermatids and testicular sperm but not in round spermatids. It is concluded that PLCzeta is a functional sperm factor for oocyte activation to initiate resumption of meiotic division in quail and its potency is acquired after elongated spermatid formation during the spermatogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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