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J Embryol Exp Morphol. 1978 Dec;48:109-25.

Interaction between inner cell mass and trophectoderm of the mouse blastocyst. I. A study of cellular proliferation.


Increase in cell number has been compared with mitotic activity in the polar and mural trophectoderm and in the inner cell mass (ICM) of mouse blastocysts. The results indicate that whereas ICM cells divide at a rate which is compatible with the rate of increase of ICM cell number, polar trophectoderm cells divide faster and mural trophectoderm cells slower than can account for their own rates of cell number increase. It is suggested that the ICM induces a high rate of proliferation in the polar trophectoderm and that there is a resulting cell shift from polar to mural regions during blastocyst development. Mural trophectoderm cells close to the ICM divide faster than those farther away, indicating that cells may retain a 'memory' of ICM contact for some time after leaving the ICM. There is considerable cell death in the blastocyst, but this is restricted to a short period of time coincident with the appearance of primitive endoderm.

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