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Cell. 1983 Dec;35(3 Pt 2):631-8.

The calcium-dependent cell-cell adhesion system regulates inner cell mass formation and cell surface polarization in early mouse development.


The monoclonal antibody ECCD-1 inhibits Ca2+-dependent cell-cell adhesion in teratocarcinoma cells, recognizing a cell surface component of MW 124,000. When mouse embryos at various preimplantation stages were cultured in the presence of ECCD-1, the compacted morphology of the 8- to 16-cell-stage embryos was destroyed. In these embryos, cell proliferation normally occurred and development of blastocyst-like vesicles was attained. However, these embryos did not contain inner cell mass (ICM). We found that ECCD-1 affects the pattern of polarization of the cell surface in late 8- and 16-cell-stage blastomeres, as detected by staining with fluorescence-labeled concanavalin A. In normal blastomeres, the pole was always apart from the cell-cell contact plane. In those cultured in ECCD-1, formation of the pole tended to be inhibited, and if observed, the pole was close to the cell-cell contact plane. We discuss the possible mechanisms for inhibition of ICM formation caused by blocking Ca2+-dependent cell-cell adhesion between blastomeres.

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