Little is known about the roles of integral membrane proteins beyond channels, carriers or receptors in meiotic oocytes. The transmembrane protein Fam70A was previously identified as a likely “female fertility factor” in Fox3a-knockout mouse ovaries where almost all follicles underwent synchronous activation and the mice became infertile very early. However, whether Fam70A functions in oocyte meiosis remains unknown. Therefore, the present study aimed to address this question.
Co-immunoprecipitation, immunogold labelling-electron microscopy, co-localization and yeast two-hybrid assays were used to verify the interaction. Antibody or small interfering RNA transfection was used to deplete the proteins. Immunofluorescence, immunohistochemistry and live tracker staining were used to examine the localization or characterize phenotypes. Western blot was used to examine the protein level.
Fam70A was enriched in oocyte membranes important for normal meiosis. Fam70A depletion remarkably disrupted spindle assembly, chromosome congression and first polar body extrusion, which subsequently increased aneuploidy and abnormal fertilization. Moreover, Fam70A directly bound Wnt5a, the most abundant Wnt member within oocytes. Depletion of either Fam70A or Wnt5a remarkably increased adenomatous polyposis coli (APC), which stabilizes active β-catenin and microtubules. Consequently, depletion of either Fam70A or Wnt5a remarkably increased p-β-catenin (inactive form) and acetylated tubulin, while APC knockdown remarkably decreased these two. Furthermore, Fam70A depletion remarkably reduced Akt phosphorylation.
Fam70A regulates meiosis and quality of mouse oocytes through both canonical and non-canonical Wnt5a signalling pathways.

© 2020 The Authors. Cell Proliferation Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.