Altered microrna expression profiles in bovine fetuses with an assisted reproduction-induced congenital overgrowth syndrome
[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT AUTHOR'S REQUEST.] Assisted reproductive technologies (ART) refer to a series of fertility treatments used to conceive offspring. ART is used worldwide in humans for treatment of infertility and in ruminants to improve genetic merit. The use of ART can induce congenital overgrowth conditions in humans and ruminants, namely Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome (BWS) and large offspring syndrome (LOS), respectively. Shared phenotypes and epigenotypes have been found between BWS and LOS. A previous study in our laboratory found global misregulation of transcripts in bovine fetuses with LOS. microRNAs (miRNAs) have been shown to play important roles in post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression. There is one study that reports misregulation of one miRNA in BWS and no studies have been done to identify misregulation of miRNAs in LOS. The goal of this study is to investigate miRNA expression profiles, determine whether there are miRNAs misregulated in bovine LOS fetuses, and functionally analyze the misregulated miRNAs. In this thesis, chapter 1, the literature review, will introduce BWS including its molecular basis, clinical features, diagnosis, and treatments. Chapter 1 will also introduce LOS including studies on embryo culture in various species, gene expression studies, and previous studies from our laboratory. In addition, chapter 1 will introduce miRNAs including its biogenesis and function. Chapter 2, which is the research chapter, will show the data of misregulated miRNA profiles in bovine LOS fetuses. Chapter 2 will become a manuscript and will be sent for peer-review soon. After chapter 2, the reader will find a general discussion in which my research findings will be incorporated into the general knowledge of the field.
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