A comparison of membrane lipid in the starfish Patiria miniata oocytes before and after maturation

Membranes from immature and mature 1-methyladenine induced P.miniata oocytes were isolated, their lipid extracted, and the fatty acids of the lipid fractions (phosphatidyl ethanolamine, phospatidyl choline, phosphatidyl serine, phosphatidyl inosiltol, triglyceride, cholesterol, free fatty acid, and cholesterol ester) compared. Results of this study show that there is a qualitative and quantitative difference in the lipid composition of these two membrane states. Relative increases in the amount of phosphatidyl choline and cholesterol, with a relative decrease in triglyceride and phosphatydyl serine-phosphatidyl inositol, were observed in the mature oocyte membrane. Additional identifiable trends included a general increase in saturation lengths induced with a corresponding shortening of the fatty acid chain of the membrane lipid in response to 1-methyladenine induced maturation. The possible implications of such results are discussed with regard to the role membrane changes may play in the initiation of development