Analysis of chorion hardening of eggs of rainbow trout, Onchorhynchus mykiss
Iuchi, I.; Ha, C.R.; Sugiyama, H.; Momura, K.
Development Growth and Differentiation 38(3): 299-306
We estimated changes of chorion hardness of rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) egg by the use of three parameters, namely increase of resistance of an egg to rupture by extraneously applied pressure, decrease of solubility of chorion protein in 8 mol/L urea and a change in the content of gamma-glutamyl-epsilon-lysine crosslink. Unfertilized egg chorions became hardened after egg activation. During chorion hardening, 49, 56 and 65 kDa protein components of the chorion gradually disappeared, high molecular weight intermediates (113, 160-170 and higher than 250 kDa) were newly formed and, finally, all components became undetectable by sodium dodecylsulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The content of gamma-glutamyl-epsilon-lysine (gamma-Glu-epsilon-Lys) crosslink in the chorion increased after hardening. Chorion hardening was inhibited by the incorporation of monodansyl-cadaverine, a competitive inhibitor for transglutaminase (TGase), into the chorions. TGase activity was detected in unfertilized eggs and localized in the chorion fraction rather than in the ooplasmic fraction. The findings suggest that chorion hardening depends upon polymerization of the chorion components by TGase-dependent gamma-Glu-epsilon-Lys crosslink formation.