Molecular characteristics of horse phospholipase C zeta (PLCζ)

Kana Sato, Takuya Wakai, Yasunari Seita, Akiko Takizawa, Rafael A. Fissore, Junya Ito, Naomi Kashiwazaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


A sperm-specific phospholipase C (PLC), PLCzeta (PLCζ), is thought to underlie the initiation of calcium ([Ca2+]i) oscillations that induce egg activation in mammals. In large domestic species, only bovine, porcine and recently equine PLCζ have been cloned, and the physiological functions of these molecules have not been fully characterized. Here, we evaluated the physiological functions of equine PLCζ (ePLCζ) in mouse oocytes. ePLCζ was cloned from testis using RT-PCR. The expression of ePLCζ messenger RNA was confirmed in testis but not in other tissues. Microinjection of ePLCζ complementary RNA (cRNA) into mouse oocytes induced long-lasting [Ca2+]i oscillations, and most of the injected oocytes formed pronuclei (PN). The injection of cRNAs encoding horse, mouse, human and cow PLCζ into mouse oocytes showed that ePLCζ had the highest [Ca2+]i oscillation-inducing activity among the species tested. Mutation of D202R, which renders the protein inactive, abrogated the activity of ePLCζ. The nuclear translocation ability of ePLCζ was defective when expressed in mouse oocytes. Taken together, our findings show for the first time that ePLCζ has highest activity of the mammalian species studied to date. Our findings will be useful for the improvement of reproductive technologies in the horse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-368
Number of pages10
JournalAnimal Science Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Fertilization
  • Horse
  • Phospholipase C
  • Sperm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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