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Asian-Australas J Anim Sci. 2016 Mar;29(3):352-8. doi: 10.5713/ajas.15.0341. Epub 2016 Mar 1.

Effect of Antioxidant Flavonoids (Quercetin and Taxifolin) on In vitro Maturation of Porcine Oocytes.

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Department of Physiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Zagazig University, 44519, Egypt .


Quercetin (QT) and taxifolin (TF) are structurally similar plant-derived flavonoids that have antioxidant properties and act as free radical scavengers. The objective of this study was to investigate effects of QT and TF on nuclear maturation of porcine oocytes. Effects of TF at 0, 1, 10, and 50 μg/mL on oocyte nuclear maturation (polar body extrusion) were investigated. After incubation for 44 h, there were no significant differences between the treatment and control groups except in the 50 μg/mL group which was significantly lower (59.2%, p<0.05) than the other groups (control: >80%). After parthenogenetic activation, further in vitro development of QT- or TF-treated vs control oocytes was investigated. A significantly higher proportion of QT-treated (1 μg/mL) oocytes developed into blastocysts compared to controls (24.3% vs 16.8%, respectively); however, cleavage rate and blastocyst cell number were not affected. The TF-treated group was not significantly different from controls. Levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and intracellular glutathione (GSH) in oocytes and embryos in a culture medium supplemented with QT or TF were measured. Both treatment groups had significantly lower (p<0.05) levels of ROS than controls, however GSH levels were different only in QT-treated oocytes. We conclude that exogenous flavonoids such as QT and TF reduce ROS levels in oocytes. Although at high concentration (50 μg/mL) both QT and TF appear to be toxic to oocytes.


Antioxidants; In vitro Maturation; Porcine Oocyte; Quercetin; Reactive Oxygen Species [ROS]

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