Denuding and Centrifugation of Maturing Bovine Oocytes Alters Oocyte Spindle Integrity and the Ability of Cytoplasm to Support Parthenogenetic and Nuclear Transfer Embryo Development

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Molecular Reproduction and Development







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The effects of cumulus cell removal and centrifugation of maturing bovine oocytes on nuclear maturation and subsequent embryo development after parthenogenetic activation and nuclear transfer were examined. Removal of cumulus cells at 4, 8, and 15 hr after in vitro maturation (IVM) or the centrifugation of denuded oocytes had no effect on maturation rates. Oocytes treated at 0 hr of IVM had a lower expulsion rate (50%) of the first polar body (PB1). The removal of cumulus cells and centrifugation affected the pattern of spindle microtubule distribution and division of chromosomes. There were almost no spindle microtubules allocated to PB1 and the spindles were swollen in anaphase I and telophase I oocytes. Approximately 20% of PB1 oocytes contained tripolar or multipolar spindles. After activation, oocytes denuded with or without centrifugation at 8 hr of IVM resulted in the lowest rate of development (3.0%). Denuded oocytes at 4, 15, and 24 hr of IVM with centrifugation or not resulted in similar blastocyst development rates (9.6%-13.2%). However, centrifugation of oocytes denuded at the beginning of IVM resulted in lower blastocyst development rate (8.1%, P < 0.05) than the noncentrifuged oocytes (17.3%). After nuclear transfer, the blastocyst development rates of oocytes denuded and centrifuged at 0, 4, and 8 hr of IVM were not different when compared to the same patch of noncentrifuged oocytes. However, oocytes denuded and centrifuged at 15 hr of IVM resulted in lower (P < 0.05) blastocyst development rates than the noncentrifuged oocytes. The results of this study suggest that removal of cumulus cells and centrifugation of denuded oocytes affect the spindle pattern. Embryo development of denuded and centrifuged oocytes may differ depending on the time of removal of cumulus cells.