Single cell transcriptome profiling revealed differences in gene expression during oocyte maturation in Haimen white goats.
Juvenile in vitro embryo transfer is an important animal reproductive technology that can shorten the generation interval of livestock, explore the reproductive potential of dams with excellent genetic traits, accelerate genetic progress and production efficiency of the herd, and provide a wealth of genetic resources for livestock breeding. However, oocytes from kids do not develop as well as those from female goats during in vitro maturation. To identify differences during different stages of oocyte maturation, we used single cell transcriptome sequencing to compare gene expression in mature oocytes from kids and female goats. We identified 1086 differentially expressed genes in mature oocytes from kids and female goats. Of these, we observed upregulated expression in 355 genes and downregulated expression in 435 genes. The differentially expressed genes were involved in a total of 245 different pathways; of which 30 were significant (P ≤ 0.05). We used real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction to screen and verify the expression of five genes specifically involved in oocyte maturation (MOS, RPS6KA1, CPEB1, ANAPC13, and CDK1). Further study of these genes will be of great importance for improving the reproductive performance of Haimen white goats.