Joy Pate

Joy Pate

  • Professor of Reproductive Physiology
303 Animal, Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences Building
University Park, PA 16802

Areas of Expertise

  • Reproductive Biology
  • Reproductive Immunology
  • Ovarian Function


  • Ph.D., University of New Hampshire, 1983
  • B.S., University of Delaware, 1979 (magna cum laude)

Professional Experience


Assistant Professor, Department of Dairy Science, The Ohio State University


Associate Professor, Department of Dairy Science, The Ohio State University


Professor, Department of Animal Sciences (dept. merger), The Ohio State University


Associate Chair, Dept. Animal Sciences, The Ohio State University


The Pennsylvania State University:

  • Professor, Department of Dairy and Animal Science
  • C.Lee Rumberger and Family Chair in Agricultural Sciences
  • Director Center for Reproductive Biology and Health


The overall goal of my research program is to improve reproductive efficiency of domestic animals. The main focus of the research is to understand the cellular mechanisms that regulate the lifespan of the corpus luteum (CL), which is the ovarian structure responsible for progesterone production and the maintenance of pregnancy. Work from this laboratory has provided insight into cholesterol metabolism for steroidogenesis, the roles of endogenous prostaglandin production in luteal function, and the mechanisms by which exogenous prostaglandin results in the demise of the CL.

There are currently two major research emphases in my laboratory. The first is to understand the interactions that occur between luteal steroidogenic cells and luteal-resident immune cells. Studies on expression of class II MHC molecules in the CL, activation of T lymphocytes by luteal steroidogenic cells, and functional programming of luteal-resident immune cells have helped to define the importance of cell-cell communication in tissue homeostasis and regulation of luteal lifespan. A more recent focus is the potential role of microRNA in regulation of differentiation and rescue of the corpus luteum during early pregnancy. Using deep sequencing technology, we have profiled microRNA and mRNA in the CL of cyclic and early pregnant cows, in an effort to discover the intracellular pathways that are regulated by microRNA to facilitate rescue of the CL during early pregnancy.

Current Teaching

  • ANSC 515 Advanced Reproductive Physiology
  • ANSC 502 Scientific Scholarship
  • Australia Study Abroad Experience, including ANSC 399A: Animal Production Systems in the Diverse Environments of Australia, ANSC 499D: Welfare of Agricultural and Recreational Animals, ANSC 399B: History, Culture and Economies of Australia, and ANSC 497A: Special Topics: Design an Economically Profitable, Environmentally Sustainable and Socially Responsible Animal Production Operation in Australia

Selected Publications

Fairchild, D.L. and Pate, J.L. 1989. Interferon‑g induction of major histocompatibility complex antigens on cultured bovine luteal cells. Biol. Reprod. 40:453‑457.

Benyo, D.F., Haibel, G.K., Laufman, H.B. and Pate, J.L. 1991. Expression of major histocompatibility complex antigens on the bovine corpus luteum during the estrous cycle, luteolysis, and early pregnancy. Biol. Reprod. 45:229‑234.

Benyo, D.F. and Pate, J.L. 1992. Tumor necrosis factor‑a alters bovine luteal cell synthetic capacity and viability. Endocrinology 130:854‑860.

Townson, D.H. and Pate, J.L. 1996. Mechanisms of action of TNF‑a‑stimulated prostaglandin production in cultured bovine luteal cells. Prostaglandins 52:361-373.

Petroff, M.G. Coggeshall, K.M., Jones, L.S., and Pate, J.L. 1997. Bovine luteal cells elicit major histocompatibility complex class II-dependent T cell proliferation. Biol. Reprod. 57:887-893.

Bove, S.E., Petroff, M.G., Nishibori, M., and Pate, J.L. 2000. Macrophage migration inhibitory factor in the bovine corpus luteum: Characterization of steady-state messenger ribonucleic acid and immunohistochemical localization. Biol. Reprod. 62:879-885.

Pate, J.L. and Keyes, P.K. 2001. Immune Cells in the Corpus Luteum: Friends or Foes? Reproduction 122:665-676.

Cannon, M.J., Petroff, M.G. and Pate, J.L. 2003. Effects of prostaglandin F2a and progesterone on the ability of luteal cells to stimulate T lymphocyte proliferation. Biol. Reprod. 69:695-700.

Cannon, M.J. and Pate, J.L. 2006. Indoleamine 2,3-Dioxygenase Participates in the Interferon-g-Induced Cell Death Process in Cultured Bovine Luteal Cells. Biol. Reprod.74:552-559

Davis, TL and Pate, JL. 2007. Proliferation of major histocompatibility nonrestricted gamma delta T cells is stimulated by bovine luteal cells. Biol. Reprod. 77:914-922

Ndiaye, K, Poole, DH and Pate, JL. 2008. Expression and regulation of functional oxytocin receptors in bovine T lymphocytes. Biol. Reprod. 78:786-793

Poole, DH and Pate, JL. 2012. Luteal microenvironment directs resident T lymphocyte function. Biol Reprod. 86:1-10.

Ndiaye, K, Poole, DH, Walusimbi, S, Cannon, MJ, Toyokawa, K, Maalouf, SW, Dong, J, Thomas P, Pate, JL. 2012. Progesterone effects on lymphocytes may be mediated by membrane progesterone receptors. J. Reprod. Immunol. 95:15-26.

Pate, JL, Johnson-Larson, CJ, Ottobre, J.S. 2012. Life or death decisions in the corpus luteum. Reprod. Dom. Anim. 47 (Suppl. 4), 297-303.

Walusimbi, SS, Pate, JL. 2013. The role of immune cells in the corpus luteum. J. Anim. Sci. 91:1650-1659.

Walusimbi SS, Pate JL. 2014. Luteal cells from functional and regressing corpora lutea differentially alter the function of gamma-delta T cells. Biol. Reprod. 90(6):140, 1-10.

Maalouf SW, Liu W-S, Albert I, Pate JL. 2014. Regulating life or death: Potential role of microRNA in rescue of the corpus luteum. Mol Cell Endocrinol 398:78-88.

Morrow M, Ottobre J, Ottobre A, Neville P, St-Pierre N, Dreschel N, Pate JL. 2015. Breed-dependent differences in the onset of fear-related avoidance behavior in puppies. J. Vet. Behavior

Maalouf SW, Liu W-S, Pate JL. 2016. MicroRNA in ovarian function. Cell Tissue Res. 363:7-18.

Maalouf SW, Smith CL, Pate JL. 2016. Changes in microRNA expression during maturation of the bovine corpus luteum: Regulation of luteal cell proliferation and function by microRNA-34a. Biol Reprod. 94(3):71, 1-14.