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PLoS One. 2008;3(12):e3970. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0003970. Epub 2008 Dec 18.

Release of sICAM-1 in oocytes and in vitro fertilized human embryos.

Author information

  • 1BioPharmaNet, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Ferrara, Ferrara, Italy.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

During the last years, several studies have reported the significant relationship between the production of soluble HLA-G molecules (sHLA-G) by 48-72 hours early embryos and an increased implantation rate in IVF protocols. As consequence, the detection of HLA-G modulation was suggested as a marker to identify the best embryos to be transferred. On the opposite, no suitable markers are available for the oocyte selection.

METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

The major finding of the present paper is that the release of ICAM-1 might be predictive of oocyte maturation. The results obtained are confirmed using three independent methodologies, such as ELISA, Bio-Plex assay and Western blotting. The sICAM-1 release is very high in immature oocytes, decrease in mature oocytes and become even lower in in vitro fertilized embryos. No significant differences were observed in the levels of sICAM-1 release between immature oocytes with different morphological characteristics. On the contrary, when the mature oocytes were subdivided accordingly to morphological criteria, the mean sICAM-I levels in grade 1 oocytes were significantly decreased when compared to grade 2 and 3 oocytes.

CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE:

The reduction of the number of fertilized oocytes and transferred embryos represents the main target of assisted reproductive medicine. We propose sICAM-1 as a biochemical marker for oocyte maturation and grading, with a possible interesting rebound in assisted reproduction techniques.

PMID:
19092999
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2599884
Free PMC Article

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