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J Mol Histol. 2004 Aug;35(6):631-8.

Three-dimensional localization and dynamics of centromeres in mouse oocytes during folliculogenesis.

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Laboratorio di Biologia dello Sviluppo e Centro di Eccellenza in Biologia Applicata, Universita' degli Studi di Pavia, 27100 Pavia, Italy.


Very little is known about oocyte nuclear architecture during folliculogenesis. Using antibodies to reveal centromeres, Hoechst-staining to detect the AT-rich pericentromeric heterochromatin (chromocenters), combined with confocal microscopy for the three-dimensional analysis of the nucleus, we demonstrate that during mouse folliculogenesis the oocyte nuclear architecture undergoes dynamic changes. In oocytes isolated from primordial and primary follicles, centromeres and chromocenters were preferentially located at the periphery of the nucleus. During oocyte growth, centromeres and chromocenters were initially found spread within the nucleus and then progressively clustered around the periphery of the nucleolus. Our results indicate that the oocyte nuclear achitecture is developmentally regulated and they contribute to a further understanding of the role of nuclear organization in the regulation of genome functioning during differentiation and development.

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