Conditional deletion of Tsc1 in the female reproductive tract impedes normal oviductal and uterine function by enhancing mTORC1 signaling in mice

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Abstract

Heightened mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) activity by genetic deletion of its direct inhibitor, Tsc1, is associated with aberrant development and dysfunction of the female reproductive tract in mice. Here, we compared the phenotypes of mice with conditional deletion of Tsc1 in the female reproductive tract by either progesterone receptor (PR)-Cre (Tsc1PR(d/d)), which inactivates Tsc1 in all major cell types in the uterus (epithelium, stroma and myometrium), or anti-Mullerian hormone type 2 receptor (Amhr2)-Cre (Tsc1Amhr2(d/d)), which inactivates stromal and myometrial Tsc1. Tsc1PR(d/d) and Tsc1Amhr2(d/d) females are infertile resulting from oviductal hyperplasia, retention of embryos in the oviduct and implantation failure. In contrast to the appropriate embryonic development after fertilization seen in Tsc1Amhr2(d/d) females, embryo development was disrupted in Tsc1PR(d/d) females. In addition, uteri in Tsc1PR(d/d) and Tsc1Amhr2(d/d) females showed epithelial hyperplasia but not endometrial cancer. In conclusion, Tsc1PR(d/d) and Tsc1Amhr2(d/d) have overlapping yet distinct phenotypes in the context of compartment-specific deletion of Tsc1.

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