Pregnancy and interferon-tau upregulate gene expression of members of the 1-8 family in the bovine uterus

Biol Reprod. 2001 Nov;65(5):1471-80. doi: 10.1095/biolreprod65.5.1471.


The 1-8 family (1-8U, 1-8D, Leu-13/9-27) of interferon (IFN)-inducible genes encodes proteins that are components of multimeric complexes involved with transduction of antiproliferative and homotypic adhesion signals. Human 1-8 family members are highly similar and are regulated by type 1 and type 2 IFNs. Because the bovine uterus is bathed in conceptus-derived IFN tau during early pregnancy, it was hypothesized that members of the 1-8 family were upregulated in the bovine uterus during early pregnancy. Oligonucleotide primers were designed based on human and rat 1-8U and Leu-13 cDNAs and used in reverse transcription polymerase chain reactions to amplify bovine cDNAs from endometrial RNA. The bovine 1-8U cDNA was sequenced, found to be 84% identical to the human 1-8U, and used to screen a bovine endometrial cDNA library to isolate the full-length 1-8U and Leu-13 cDNAs. The inferred amino acid sequences of bovine 1-8U and Leu-13 were 72% and 73% identical to their respective human counterparts. Bovine 1-8U and Leu-13 retain an amino acid motif that is conserved in other 1-8 family members and in some ubiquitin-conjugating enzymes (E2s). This motif is critical for function of E2s in covalently linking ubiquitin to targeted proteins. Northern blotting revealed that bovine endometrial 1-8U and Leu-13 mRNAs were upregulated on Day 15 of pregnancy (P < 0.0001) and continued to accumulate through Day 18 of pregnancy (P < 0.05) when compared with endometrium from nonpregnant cows. The bovine 1-8U and Leu-13 mRNAs were also upregulated (P < 0.05) by IFN tau (25 nM) within 3 h, continued to accumulate through 12 h, and reached a plateau at 12-24 h in cultured bovine endometrial cells. In situ hybridization revealed that mRNAs encoding 1-8 family members were heavily localized to glandular epithelium but also were present to a lesser extent in the luminal epithelium and stroma. The temporal upregulation of 1-8U and Leu-13 mRNAs by pregnancy and IFN tau and tissue distribution of these mRNAs paralleled closely that of the ubiquitin homolog, IFN-stimulated gene product 17. These IFN-induced proteins probably work together to prepare the endometrium for adhesion of the developing conceptus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Cattle / genetics*
  • DNA, Complementary / chemistry
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • In Situ Hybridization
  • Interferon Type I / pharmacology*
  • Membrane Proteins*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Proteins / pharmacology*
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / chemistry
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / genetics*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Uterus / metabolism*


  • DNA, Complementary
  • IFITM3 protein, human
  • Interferon Type I
  • Membrane Proteins
  • Pregnancy Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA-Binding Proteins
  • trophoblastin