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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16(11), 27339-27349;

A Transcriptomic Study of Maternal Thyroid Adaptation to Pregnancy in Rats

College of Veterinary Medicine, South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou 510642, China
Department of Biology, Shantou University, Shantou 515063, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Philip Newton Baker
Received: 26 September 2015 / Revised: 3 November 2015 / Accepted: 10 November 2015 / Published: 13 November 2015
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry)
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Thyroid disorders are relatively frequently observed in pregnant women. However, the impact of pregnancy on maternal thyroid has not been systematically evaluated. In the present study, using the rat as an animal model, we observed that the weight of maternal thyroid increased by about 18% in late pregnancy. To gain an insight into the molecular mechanisms, we took advantage of RNA-seq approaches to investigate global gene expression changes in the maternal thyroid. We identified a total of 615 differentially expressed genes, most of which (558 genes or 90.7%) were up-regulated in late pregnancy compared to the non-pregnant control. Gene ontology analysis showed that genes involved in cell cycle and metabolism were significantly enriched among up-regulated genes. Unexpectedly, pathway analysis revealed that expression levels for key components of the thyroid hormone synthesis pathway were not significantly altered. In addition, by examining of the promoter regions of up-regulated genes, we identified MAZ (MYC-associated zinc finger protein) and TFCP2 (transcription factor CP2) as two causal transcription factors. Our study contributes to an increase in the knowledge on the maternal thyroid adaptation to pregnancy. View Full-Text
Keywords: thyroid; pregnancy; adaptation; RNA-seq thyroid; pregnancy; adaptation; RNA-seq

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Liu, J.-L.; Wang, T.-S.; Zhao, M.; Peng, Y.; Fu, Y.-S. A Transcriptomic Study of Maternal Thyroid Adaptation to Pregnancy in Rats. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2015, 16, 27339-27349.

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