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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13(4), 4655-4672; doi:10.3390/ijms13044655
Article

Injurious Effects of Curcumin on Maturation of Mouse Oocytes, Fertilization and Fetal Development via Apoptosis

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Received: 30 December 2011 / Revised: 31 March 2012 / Accepted: 9 April 2012 / Published: 12 April 2012
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics)
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Abstract

Curcumin, a common dietary pigment and spice, is a hydrophobic polyphenol derived from the rhizome of the herb Curcuma longa. Previously, we reported a cytotoxic effect of curcumin on mouse embryonic stem cells and blastocysts and its association with defects in subsequent development. In the present study, we further investigated the effects of curcumin on oocyte maturation and subsequent pre- and post-implantation development, both in vitro and in vivo. Notably, curcumin induced a significant reduction in the rate of oocyte maturation, fertilization, and in vitro embryonic development. Treatment of oocytes with curcumin during in vitro maturation (IVM) led to increased resorption of postimplantation embryos and decreased fetal weight. Experiments with an in vivo mouse model disclosed that consumption of drinking water containing 40 μM curcumin led to decreased oocyte maturation and in vitro fertilization as well as early embryonic developmental injury. Finally, pretreatment with a caspase-3-specific inhibitor effectively prevented curcumin-triggered injury effects, suggesting that embryo impairment by curcumin occurs mainly via a caspase-dependent apoptotic process.
Keywords: curcumin; apoptosis; oocyte maturation; embryonic development curcumin; apoptosis; oocyte maturation; embryonic development
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Chen, C.-C.; Chan, W.-H. Injurious Effects of Curcumin on Maturation of Mouse Oocytes, Fertilization and Fetal Development via Apoptosis. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13, 4655-4672.

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