Effect of IVF and laser zona dissection on DNA methylation pattern of mouse zygotes.
ABSTRACT In vitro fertilization (IVF) and zona pellucida laser microdissection-facilitated IVF (Laser-IVF) are presently routine procedures in human assisted reproduction. The safety of these methods at the epigenetic level is not fully understood. Studies on mouse Laser-IVF embryos provide evidence that the use of Laser-IVF leads to reduced birth rate, indicating a potential harm of this technique for the embryo. Hence, the aim of this study was to examine the difference in DNA methylation pattern between IVF- and Laser-IVF-derived mouse zygotes. We examined two experimental groups of C3HeB/FeJ oocytes: (1) zona-intact and (2) laser-microdissected oocytes that were fertilized in vitro with freshly collected spermatozoa. Zygotes were fixed 5, 8, and 12 h after fertilization, and indirect immunofluorescence staining was studied using an anti-5-methylcytidine (5-MeC) antibody. The fluorescence intensities of paternal and maternal pronuclei were evaluated using the computer-assisted analysis of digital images. In addition, we performed a semiquantitative RT-PCR analysis of the presence of transcripts of three developmental marker genes, Oct4, Dab2, and Dnmt3b, in IVF- and Laser-IVF-derived blastocysts. We observed no significant differences in methylation status of the paternal genome and in the transcripts of the developmental marker genes after IVF and Laser-IVF. In conclusion, epigenetic patterns and early embryonic development are not altered by laser-assisted IVF techniques and another explanation must be sought for the poor implantation rates observed in mice.
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ABSTRACT: The utility of cryopreserved mouse gametes for reproduction of transgenic mice depends on development of assisted reproductive technologies, including vitrification of unfertilized mouse oocytes. Due to hardening of the zona pellucida, spermatozoa are often unable to penetrate vitrified-warmed (V-W) oocytes. Laser-assisted in vitro fertilization (LAIVF) facilitates fertilization by allowing easier penetration of spermatozoa through a perforation in the zona. We investigated the efficiency of V-W C57BL/6NTac oocytes drilled by the XYClone laser, compared to fresh oocytes. By using DAP213 for cryoprotection, 83% (1,470/1,762) of vitrified oocytes were recovered after warming and 78% were viable. Four groups were evaluated for two-cell embryo and live offspring efficiency: 1) LAIVF using V-W oocytes, 2) LAIVF using fresh oocytes, 3) conventional IVF using V-W oocytes and 4) conventional IVF using fresh oocytes. First, the groups were tested using fresh C57BL/6NTac spermatozoa (74% motile, 15 million/ml). LAIVF markedly improved the two-cell embryo efficiency using both V-W (76%, 229/298) and fresh oocytes (69%, 135/197), compared to conventional IVF (7%, 12/182; 6%, 14/235, respectively). Then, frozen-thawed C57BL/6NTac spermatozoa (35% motile, 15 million/ml) were used and LAIVF was again found to enhance fertilization efficiency, with two-cell embryo rates of 87% (298/343) using V-W oocytes (P<0.05, compared to fresh spermatozoa), and 73% (195/266) using fresh oocytes. Conventional IVF with frozen-thawed spermatozoa using V-W (6%, 10/168) and fresh (5%, 15/323) oocytes produced few two-cell embryos. Although live offspring efficiency following embryo transfer was greater with conventional IVF (35%, 18/51; LAIVF: 6%, 50/784), advantage was seen with LAIVF in live offspring obtained from total oocytes (5%, 50/1,010; conventional IVF: 2%, 18/908). Our results demonstrated that zona-drilled V-W mouse oocytes can be used for IVF procedures using both fresh and frozen-thawed spermatozoa, producing live pups. The ability to cryopreserve mouse gametes for LAIVF may facilitate management of large-scale transgenic mouse production facilities.PLoS ONE 03/2014; 9(3):e91892. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0091892 · 3.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: In the present report, we studied the safety, efficacy, and efficiency of using an infrared laser to facilitate in vitro fertilization (IVF) by assessing fertilization, development, and birth rates after laser-zona drilling (LZD) in 30 subfertile genetically modified (GM) mouse lines. We determined that LZD increased the fertilization rate 4 to 10 times that of regular IVF, thus facilitating the derivation of 26 of 30 (86.7%) GM mouse lines. Cryopreserved 2-cell stage embryos derived by LZD-assisted IVF were recovered and developed to blastocysts in vitro at the same rate as frozen-thawed embryos derived by regular IVF. Surprisingly, after surgical transfer to pseudopregnant recipients, the birth rate of embryos derived by LZD-assisted IVF was significantly lower than that of embryos derived by regular IVF. However, this result could be completely mitigated by the addition of 0.25 M sucrose to the culture medium during LZD which caused the oocyte to shrink in volume relative to the perivitelline space (PVS). By increasing the distance from the laser target site on the zona pellucida, we hypothesize that the hyperosmotic effect of sucrose reduced the potential for laser-induced cytotoxic thermal damage to the underlying oocytes. With appropriate preparation and cautious application, our results indicate that LZD-assisted IVF is a safe, efficacious, and efficient assisted reproductive technology (ART) for deriving mutant mouse lines with male factor infertility and subfertility caused by sperm-zona penetration defects.Reproduction 01/2013; DOI:10.1530/REP-12-0477