Modulation of thermal killing of bovine lymphocytes and preimplantation mouse embryos by alanine and taurine

Jerry R. Malayer From the Dairy Science Department, Institute of Food Animal and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0601 (Malayer, Hansen), and the Department of Biomedical Sciences, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario N1G 2W1 (Pollard).

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John W. Pollard From the Dairy Science Department, Institute of Food Animal and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0601 (Malayer, Hansen), and the Department of Biomedical Sciences, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario N1G 2W1 (Pollard).

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Peter J. Hansen From the Dairy Science Department, Institute of Food Animal and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611-0601 (Malayer, Hansen), and the Department of Biomedical Sciences, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ontario N1G 2W1 (Pollard).

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Summary

Addition of alanine and taurine blocked killing of lymphocytes caused by culture at 45 C. The optimal concentration for thermoprotection was achieved at 12.5 mM for l-alanine and 5 mM for taurine. Both d and l forms of alanine provided thermoprotection. The effect of these agents was not simply to increase osmolarity of the culture medium, because NaCl did not provide thermoprotection at comparable concentrations. Alanine and taurine were each tested at concentration of 50 mM for ability to block heat shock-induced killing and developmental retardation of 8- to 16-cell mouse embryos. Both agents enhanced embryo development after exposure to high temperature, though development remained less than that for embryos not exposed to high temperature. In one experiment, for example, 81% of embryos cultured at 38 C advanced in development during culture vs 0% at 42 C, 15% at 42 C with alanine, and 32% at 42 C with taurine. The beneficial effect of alanine at high temperature may have been partly attributable to effects independent of thermoprotection, because development of embryos cultured at 38 C was also improved by alanine.

Summary

Addition of alanine and taurine blocked killing of lymphocytes caused by culture at 45 C. The optimal concentration for thermoprotection was achieved at 12.5 mM for l-alanine and 5 mM for taurine. Both d and l forms of alanine provided thermoprotection. The effect of these agents was not simply to increase osmolarity of the culture medium, because NaCl did not provide thermoprotection at comparable concentrations. Alanine and taurine were each tested at concentration of 50 mM for ability to block heat shock-induced killing and developmental retardation of 8- to 16-cell mouse embryos. Both agents enhanced embryo development after exposure to high temperature, though development remained less than that for embryos not exposed to high temperature. In one experiment, for example, 81% of embryos cultured at 38 C advanced in development during culture vs 0% at 42 C, 15% at 42 C with alanine, and 32% at 42 C with taurine. The beneficial effect of alanine at high temperature may have been partly attributable to effects independent of thermoprotection, because development of embryos cultured at 38 C was also improved by alanine.

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