AK Visiting Lecture Series 04 w/ Dr. Peluffo
March 14, 2023 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm EDT
“Novel role of chemokines in the ovulatory cascade and their potential application for nonhormonal contraceptive development”
The Anne Klibanski Visiting Lecture Series was created to support and advance the careers of women. These lectures bring together faculty from institutions that have hosted Anne Klibanski Scholars with MGH scholars, on topics that overlap both research areas.
Shortly before ovulation, the luteinizing hormone (LH) surge induces processes critical for fertility, including C-OE and resumption of meiosis. This presentation discusses the novel role of chemokines in periovulatory events, describing recent evidence. Dr. Peluffo will show her laboratory findings supporting this, together with limited published studies by others to 1) review the current knowledge regarding the ovulatory cascade and the role of chemokine in the periovulatory period; 2) introduce her study research project outcomes; 3) analyze the direct involvement of the chemokine receptor CCR2 in periovulatory events such as COE and oocyte maturation; 4) analyze and discuss the interaction of CCR2 receptor with the EGFR in regards to the periovulatory events; 5) Finally, the presentation will discuss future aims and how to move forward in advancing in elucidating new molecular mechanisms involved in the ovulatory cascade that eventually can be targeted to develop a new non-hormonal female contraceptive.
Presenter: Marina Cinthia Peluffo, PhD, Independent Scientist, CONICET, División de Endocrinología, Hospital de Niños Ricardo Gutiérrez
Since starting her career as a reproductive biologist, Dr. Peluffo focused specifically on ovarian processes such as folliculogenesis, follicular atresia, as well as corpus luteum formation and luteolysis. During her post-doctorate fellowship, she conducted studies that aim to understand the molecular and cellular events involved in the expansion of the primate cumulus-oocytes complex (COC) as well as characterizing oocyte maturation in vitro. She worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Oregon National Primate Research Center (ONPRC-OHSU) under the supervision of Dr. Richard L. Stouffer, Dr. Jon D. Hennebold and Dr. Mary B. Zelinski. From her post doctorate, she gained experience and published five papers as first author, utilizing molecular and cellular methodologies that allow for in vitro analyses of cumulus-oocyte expansion (C-OE), gene expression and localization, as well as protein expression and localization, together with metalloproteinase activities. In addition, Dr. Peluffo learned how to perform different primate cultures (small antral follicles and COCs) and IVF. After her post doctorate, she returned to her home country (Argentina) and established an independent laboratory studying the role of chemokines in C-OE and oocyte maturation. She recently received a promotion to an Independent Scientist at the “Centro de Investigaciones Endocrinológicas” (CEDIE) by the Argentine National Research Council (CONICET). Dr. Peluffo established two different valuable feline culture systems (antral follicles and COCs) that support their use to study follicular development, steroidogenesis, periovulatory events as well as follicle and COC biology in general, respectively. Also, she demonstrated a direct effect of the chemokine CCL2/CCR2 system within the feline COC in vitro, by increasing the mRNA levels of key genes involved in the ovulatory cascade, and a significant stimulation on spontaneous oocyte maturation. Moreover, her laboratory demonstrated that a highly selective CCR2 antagonist decreased the mRNA expression level of some periovulatory genes induced by gonadotropins, amphiregulin (AREG) or prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) within the feline COC.