Project Number: 1245-32000-092-02
Start Date: Nov 05, 2009
End Date: Aug 31, 2013
Our proposed experiments are designed to evaluate the impact of myoepithelial cells in prepubertal bovine mammogenesis and investigate ovariectomy-induced changes in gene expression that lead to myoepithelial differentiation. Co-localization studies will allow us to delineate stages of differentiation through myoepithelial ontogeny. Analysis of myoepithelial differentiation and ontogeny in archived tissue samples will yield insight into physiologic regulation of myoepithelial differentiation, and analysis of myoepithelial ontogeny from birth to 42d of age will fill a substantial knowledge gap related to peri-natal bovine mammary development. Finally, we will use laser microdissection and microarrays to assay changes in gene expression that underlie the observed effect of ovariectomy on myoepithelial differentiation. Data from these studies will provide new insights into mechanisms that control mammogenesis in prepubertal heifers and therefore aid in efforts to develop therapies to improve mammary development and milk production. Additionally, knowledge of cell lineage and mammary gland development is key for future studies designed to promote repair of mammary tissue that has been damaged by mastitis.