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Reprod Fertil Dev. 2013;25(8):1204-15. doi: 10.1071/RD12215.

Production of good-quality blastocyst embryos following IVF of ovine oocytes vitrified at the germinal vesicle stage using a cryoloop.

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1
Animal Development and Biotechnology Group, School of Biosciences, The University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE12 5RD, UK.

Abstract

The cryopreservation of immature oocytes at the germinal vesicle (GV) stage would create an easily accessible, non-seasonal source of female gametes for research and reproduction. The present study investigated the ability of ovine oocytes vitrified at the GV stage using a cryoloop to be subsequently matured, fertilised and cultured in vitro to blastocyst-stage embryos. Selected cumulus-oocyte complexes obtained from mature ewes at the time of death were randomly divided into vitrified, toxicity and control groups. Following vitrification and warming, viable oocytes were matured in vitro for 24 h. Matured oocytes were either evaluated for nuclear maturation, spindle and chromosome configuration or fertilised and cultured in vitro for 7 days. No significant differences were observed in the frequencies of IVM (oocytes at the MII stage), oocytes with normal spindle and chromatin configuration and fertilised oocytes among the three groups. Cleavage at 24 and 48 h post insemination was significantly decreased (P<0.01) in vitrified oocytes. No significant differences were observed in the proportion of blastocyst development between vitrified and control groups (29.4% v. 45.1%, respectively). No significant differences were observed in total cell numbers, the number of apoptotic nuclei or the proportion of diploid embryos among the three groups. In conclusion, we report for the first time that ovine oocytes vitrified at the GV stage using a cryoloop have the ability to be matured, fertilised and subsequently developed in vitro to produce good-quality blastocyst embryos at frequencies comparable to those obtained using fresh oocytes.

PMID:
23336581
DOI:
10.1071/RD12215
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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