Reproduction, Fertility and Development Reproduction, Fertility and Development Society
Vertebrate reproductive science and technology
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Modulation of embryonic development due to mating with immunised males

Ludmila A. Gerlinskaya A C , Svetlana O. Maslennikova A , Margaret V. Anisimova A , Nataly A. Feofanova A , Evgenii L. Zavjalov A , Galina V. Kontsevaya A , Yuri M. Moshkin A and Mikhail P. Moshkin A B C
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A Department of Genetic Resources of Experimental Animals, Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Siberian Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, pr. Akad. Lavrentieva 10, Novosibirsk 630090, Russia.

B Department of Zoology, Tomsk State University, pr. Lenina 36, Tomsk 634050, Russia.

C Corresponding authors. Emails: mmp@bionet.nsc.ru; lgerlinskaya@bionet.nsc.ru

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 29(3) 565-574 https://doi.org/10.1071/RD15173
Submitted: 28 January 2014  Accepted: 29 August 2015   Published: 5 October 2015

Abstract

The modification of pre- and postnatal development conferred by immunogenic stimulation of mothers provides a population-level adaptation mechanism for non-genetic transfer of maternal experiences to progeny. However little is known about the transmission of paternal immune experiences to offspring. Here, we show that immune priming of males 3–9 days before mating affects the growth and humoral environment of developing embryos of outbred (ICR) and inbred (C57BL and BALB/c) mice. Antigenic stimulation of fathers caused a significant increase in embryonic bodyweight as measured on Day 16 of pregnancy and altered other gestation parameters, such as feto–placental ratio. Pregnant females mated with immunised males were also characterised by changes in humoral conditions as shown by measurements of blood and amniotic progesterone, testosterone and granulocyte–macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF) cytokine concentrations. These results emphasise the role of paternal effects of immune priming on the in utero environment and fetal growth.

Additional keywords: amniotic fluid, GM-CSF, KLH, paternal effect, pregnancy, progesterone.


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