Reproduction, Fertility and Development Reproduction, Fertility and Development Society
Vertebrate reproductive science and technology


G. G. Kaiser A , P. J. Ross B , K. Wang B and J. B. Cibelli B

A Biotecnología de la Reproducción, INTA, Balcarce, Argentina;

B Cellular Reprogramming Laboratory, Department of Animal Science, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, USA

Reproduction, Fertility and Development 22(1) 188-189
Published: 8 December 2009


In this study we evaluated mitochondrial distribution of individual bovine embryos after IVF, parthenogenetic activation (PG), and somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT). COCs obtained from slaughterhouse ovaries were matured in vitro for at least 18 h in TCM-199 supplemented with hormones, and then divided into 3 groups. SCNT and PG oocytes were stripped by vortexing in HEPES-HECM (hamster embryo culture medium) medium (HH) containing hyaluronidase and metaphase II (MII) oocytes selected by visualization of a polar body. The PG group oocytes were exposed 24h post-maturation to 5 μM ionomycin in HH for 4 min, then rinsed 3 times in HH and allocated to a 4-h culture in 2 mM DMAP in KSOM for activation. The SCNT group oocytes were included in a nuclear transfer procedure performed as previously described (Ross et al. 2006 Biotechniques 41, 741-750). Activation was performed as described for the PG group. The IVF group COCs were co-incubated for 20 h with 106 spermatozoa/mL in IVF-TALP supplemented with heparin. To label mitochondria, 1 mM MitoTracker CMXRos Red (Molecular Probes, Eugene, OR, USA) was added to HH at a final concentration of 0.3 μM. Samples were cultured for 15 min, washed in HH, placed in a glass-bottomed 35-mm Petri dish, and then observed and live photographed by using a spinning disk confocal microscope (Nikon Eclipse TE2000-E + CARV Confocal) equipped with a Cascade 512 B camera (Roper Scientific, Tucson, AZ, USA) using a Nikon 40×, 1.3 NA oil objective lens. Z series images were taken acquiring 15 focal planes at 10-μm intervals. Analysis was performed using Metamorph software. Samples were taken at pronuclear, 4 cell, and morula stages. Each sample was classified for its mitochondrial localization in pericytoplasm, cytoplasm, and perinuclear. Data was analyzed by proc glimmix (SAS, Cary, NC, USA). Significance was set at P < 0.05. A similar pericytoplasmic distribution of mitochondria for all treatments up to the 4-cell stage was observed. At the pronucelar stage, mitochondria distribution was mostly pericytoplasmic, changing to cytoplasmic at the 4-cell stage. At the morula stage there was a significantly higher number of embryos with perinuclear distribution in IVF than in PG and SCNT embryos (Table 1). Our findings demonstrate that mitochondrial reorganization differs in fertilized more-developed embryos compared with their activated counterparts. This may have implications for further embryo development, mainly after SCNT.

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