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Genomics. 2013 Jan;101(1):24-9. doi: 10.1016/j.ygeno.2012.09.002. Epub 2012 Sep 12.

Assessment of MDA efficiency for genotyping using cloned embryo biopsies.

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Parco Tecnologico Padano, Via Einstein, Lodi, Italy.


The possibility to genotype embryos prior to implantation would have advantages for increasing the speed of selection of cattle. Reliable genotyping requires more DNA than can be obtained from biopsies of embryos, if they are to remain viable. Multiple displacement amplification (MDA) is a whole genome amplification technique used to increase the amount of DNA from biopsies for analysis. Reduced genome coverage resulting in Allele Drop Out (ADO) at heterozygous loci or missing genotypes are drawbacks of MDA. The present article describes the correlation between the input DNA quantity or embryo biopsy size and MDA success. Missing genotypes and ADO drastically increased when fewer than 30-40 cells or the genomic equivalents were used. However, embryo viability was found to be reduced if biopsied with more than 10 cells. Therefore, in vitro cell culture was investigated as a means to increase the number of cells available and the genotyping reliability.

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