The purpose of the present study was to clarify the expression of ARID1A in polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and its effect on ovarian granulosa cells (GCs).
Serum samples were collected from PCOS patients to detect the expression of ARID1A by qRT-PCR. Then, mouse and human ovarian GCs were isolated and divided into several groups according to difference in transfection, and the following experiments were performed: MTT assay, flow cytometry, qRT-PCR, radioimmunoassay, and Western blotting.
ARID1A was down-regulated in the serum of PCOS patients and ovarian GCs from PCOS mice. Human and mouse ovarian GCs in the ARID1A group and LY294002 group showed decreased proliferation and increased apoptosis compared to those in the mock group, and showed a higher percentage of G0/G1 phase and lower percentage of S phase or G2/M. Moreover, the expression of steroid metabolism-related genes (3βHSD, Cyp11a1, StAR and Cyp19a1) in these two groups was down-regulated, with lower levels of estradiol (E2) and progesterone (P). In addition, protein expression of cleaved caspase-3 was increased while expression of p-Akt/Akt and cyclin D1 was decreased. However, the levels of the above indicators in the si-ARID1A group showed totally different changes. Furthermore, LY294002, the PI3K/Akt pathway inhibitor, could reverse the effect of si-ARID1A on the ovarian GCs.
ARID1A was down-regulated in PCOS, while ARID1A overexpression can suppress the PI3K/Akt pathway to inhibit proliferation and promote apoptosis in ovarian granulosa cells.

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