Primordial germ cells (PGCs) are the precursors of adult germ cells. Among the embryonic stem-like cells in bird embryo, only they can transmit the genetic information to the next generation. Despite the wide range of applications, very little is known about the mechanism that governs primordial germ cell self-renewal and differentiation. As a first step, researchers at the NARIC, Hungary compared 12 newly established chicken PGC lines derived from two different chicken breeds, performing CCK-8 proliferation assay.

All of the lines were derived from individual embryos. A significant difference was found among the lines. As microRNAs have been proved to play a key role in the maintenance of pluripotency and the cell cycle regulation of stem cells miRNA microarray analysis was performed to characterize differential expression. MiRNAs were found to express differently in PGC lines with high proliferation rate, compared to PGC lines with low proliferation rate and gga-miR-2127 expressed differently in female and male cell lines. The microarray analysis also revealed high expression level of the gga-miR-302b-3p strand (member of miR-302/367 cluster) in slowly proliferating PGC lines compared to gga-miR-302b-5p strand. We confirmed that the inhibition of miR-302b-5p significantly increases the doubling time of the examined PGC lines.

In conclusion, the researchers found that gga-miR-181-5p, gga-miR-2127 and members of the ggamiR-302/367 cluster have a dominant role in the regulation of avian primordial germ cell proliferation.

LC Sciences

Expression pattern of miRNAs, identified in all examined samples by LC chicken miRNA microarray analysis


B. Lázár, M. Anand, R. Tóth, E. P. Várkonyi, K. Liptói, E. Gócza (2018) Comparison the microRNA expression profiles of male and female avian primordial germ cell lines Stem Cells Intl volume 8, Article number: 8248 [article]

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