Jhamat N, Niazi A, Guo Y, Chanrot M, Ivanova E, Kelsey G, Bongcam-Rudloff E, Andersson G, Humblot P
BMC Genomics 21 (1) 385 [2020-06-03; online 2020-06-03]
Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) endotoxin stimulates pro-inflammatory pathways and is a key player in the pathological mechanisms involved in the development of endometritis. This study aimed to investigate LPS-induced DNA methylation changes in bovine endometrial epithelial cells (bEECs), which may affect endometrial function. Following in vitro culture, bEECs from three cows were either untreated (0) or exposed to 2 and 8 μg/mL LPS for 24 h. DNA samples extracted at 0 h and 24 h were sequenced using reduced representation bisulfite sequencing (RRBS). When comparing DNA methylation results at 24 h to time 0 h, a larger proportion of hypomethylated regions were identified in the LPS-treated groups, whereas the trend was opposite in controls. When comparing LPS groups to controls at 24 h, a total of 1291 differentially methylated regions (DMRs) were identified (55% hypomethylated and 45% hypermethylated). Integration of DNA methylation data obtained here with our previously published gene expression data obtained from the same samples showed a negative correlation (r = - 0.41 for gene promoter, r = - 0.22 for gene body regions, p < 0.05). Differential methylation analysis revealed that effects of LPS treatment were associated with methylation changes for genes involved in regulation of immune and inflammatory responses, cell adhesion, and external stimuli. Gene ontology and pathway analyses showed that most of the differentially methylated genes (DMGs) were associated with cell proliferation and apoptotic processes; and pathways such as calcium-, oxytocin- and MAPK-signaling pathways with recognized roles in innate immunity. Several DMGs were related to systemic inflammation and tissue re-modelling including HDAC4, IRAK1, AKT1, MAP3K6, Wnt7A and ADAMTS17. The present results show that LPS altered the DNA methylation patterns of bovine endometrial epithelial cells. This information, combined with our previously reported changes in gene expression related to endometrial function, confirm that LPS activates pro-inflammatory mechanisms leading to perturbed immune balance and cell adhesion processes in the endometrium.