[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Single-cell genomics is revolutionizing basic genome research and clinical genetic diagnosis. However, none of the current research or clinical methods for single-cell analysis distinguishes between the analysis of a cell in G1-, S- or G2/M-phase of the cell cycle. Here, we demonstrate by means of array comparative genomic hybridization that charting the DNA copy number landscape of a cell in S-phase requires conceptually different approaches to that of a cell in G1- or G2/M-phase. Remarkably, despite single-cell whole-genome amplification artifacts, the log2 intensity ratios of single S-phase cells oscillate according to early and late replication domains, which in turn leads to the detection of significantly more DNA imbalances when compared with a cell in G1- or G2/M-phase. Although these DNA imbalances may, on the one hand, be falsely interpreted as genuine structural aberrations in the S-phase cell's copy number profile and hence lead to misdiagnosis, on the other hand, the ability to detect replication domains genome wide in one cell has important applications in DNA-replication research. Genome-wide cell-type-specific early and late replicating domains have been identified by analyses of DNA from populations of cells, but cell-to-cell differences in DNA replication may be important in genome stability, disease aetiology and various other cellular processes.
Nucleic Acids Research 01/2013; · 8.81 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: study question: What are the aneuploidy rates and incidence of mosaicism in good-quality human preimplantation embryos. summary answer: High-level mosaicism and structural aberrations are not restricted to arrested or poorly developing embryos but are also common in good-quality IVF embryos. what is known already: Humans, compared with other mammals, have a poor fertility rate, and even IVF treatments have a relatively low success rate. It is known that human gametes and early preimplantation embryos carry chromosomal abnormalities that are thought to lower their developmental potential. study design, size and duration: The embryos studied came from nine young (age ,35 years old) IVF patients and were part of a cohort of embryos that all resulted in healthy births. These 14 embryos inseminated by ICSI and cryopreserved on Day 2 of de-velopment were thawed, cultured overnight and allowed to succumb by being left at room temperature for 24 h. Following removal of the zona pellucida, blastomeres were disaggregated and collected. participants/materials, setting and methods: There were 91 single blastomeres collected and amplified by multiple displacement amplification. Array-comparative genomic hybridization was performed on the amplified DNA. Array-data were normalized and aneuploidy was detected by the circular binary segmentation method. main results and the role of chance: The good-quality embryos exhibited high rates of aneuploidy, 10 of 14 (71.4%) of the embryos being mosaic. While none of the embryos had the same aneuploidy pattern in all cells, 4 of 14 (28.6%) were uniformly diploid. Of the 70 analysed blastomeres, 55.7% were diploid and 44.3% had chromosomal abnormalities, while 29% of the abnormal cells carried structural aberrations. wider implications of the findings: Finding such a high rate of aneuploidy and mosaicism in excellent quality embryos from cycles with a high implantation rate warrants further research on the origin and significance of chromosomal abnormalities in human preim-plantation embryos. study funding/competing interest(s): This research was supported by the Instituut voor de aanmoediging van innovatie door Wetenschap en Technologie in Vlaanderen (IWT-Vlaanderen). A.M. is a PhD student at the IWT-Vlaanderen. C.S. is a postdoctoral fellow at the FWO Vlaanderen. There are no competing interests.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Early human in vitro fertilized embryos frequently accumulate whole chromosome aneuploidies and segmental imbalances. This embryonic chromosomal instability does not necessarily undermine normal human development, but it may lead to loss of conception, genetic disease, and genetic variation development. In this review we provide an overview of how this instability of chromosomes arises and evolves during early human embryogenesis.
Seminars in Reproductive Medicine 08/2012; 30(4):302-8. · 3.21 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We present a protocol for reliably detecting DNA copy number aberrations in a single human cell. Multiple displacement-amplified DNAs of a cell are hybridized to a 3,000-bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) array and to an Affymetrix 250,000 (250K)-SNP array. Subsequent copy number calling is based on the integration of BAC probe-specific copy number probabilities that are estimated by comparing probe intensities with a single-cell whole-genome amplification (WGA) reference model for diploid chromosomes, as well as SNP copy number and loss-of-heterozygosity states estimated by hidden Markov models (HMM). All methods for detecting DNA copy number aberrations in single human cells have difficulty in confidently discriminating WGA artifacts from true genetic variants. Furthermore, some methods lack thorough validation for segmental DNA imbalance detection. Our protocol minimizes false-positive variant calling and enables uniparental isodisomy detection in single cells. Additionally, it provides quality assessment, allowing the exclusion of uninterpretable single-cell WGA samples. The protocol takes 5-7 d.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Microarray analysis enables the genome-wide detection of copy number variations and the investigation of chromosomal instability. Whereas array techniques have been well established for the analysis of unamplified DNA derived from many cells, it has been more challenging to enable the accurate analysis of single cell genomes. In this review, we provide an overview of single cell DNA amplification techniques, the different array approaches, and discuss their potential applications to study human embryos.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Detection of chromosomal aberrations from a single cell by array comparative genomic hybridization (single-cell array CGH), instead of from a population of cells, is an emerging technique. However, such detection is challenging because of the genome artifacts and the DNA amplification process inherent to the single cell approach. Current normalization algorithms result in inaccurate aberration detection for single-cell data. We propose a normalization method based on channel, genome composition and recurrent genome artifact corrections. We demonstrate that the proposed channel clone normalization significantly improves the copy number variation detection in both simulated and real single-cell array CGH data.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recently, a high incidence of chromosome instability (CIN) was reported in human cleavage stage embryos. Based on the copy number changes that were observed in the blastomeres it was hypothesized that chromosome breakages and fusions occur frequently in cleavage stage human embryos and instigate subsequent breakage-fusion-bridge cycles. In addition, it was hypothesized that the DNA breaks present in spermatozoa could trigger this CIN. To test these hypotheses, we genotyped both parents as well as 93 blastomeres from 24 IVF embryos and developed a novel single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) array-based algorithm to determine the parental origin of (aberrant) loci in single cells. Paternal as well as maternal alleles were commonly rearranged in the blastomeres indicating that sperm-specific DNA breaks do not explain the majority of these structural variants. The parent-of-origin analyses together with microarray-guided FISH analyses demonstrate the presence of inv dup del chromosomes as well as more complex rearrangements. These data provide unequivocal evidence for breakage-fusion-bridge cycles in those embryos and suggest that the human cleavage stage embryo is a major source of chromosomal disorders.
Human Mutation 03/2011; 32(7):783-93. · 5.05 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Patients carrying a chromosomal rearrangement (CR) have an increased risk for chromosomally unbalanced conceptions. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) may avoid the transfer of embryos carrying unbalanced rearrangements, therefore increasing the chance of pregnancy. Only 7-12 loci can be screened by fluorescence in situ hybridization whereas microarray technology can detect genome-wide imbalances at the single cell level. We performed PGD for a CR carrier with karyotype 46,XY,ins(3;2)(p23;q23q14.2),t(6;14)(p12.2;q13) using array comparative genomic hybridization. Selection of embryos for transfer was only based on copy number status of the chromosomes involved in both rearrangements. In two ICSI-PGD cycles, nine and seven embryos were analysed by array, leaving three and one embryo(s) suitable for transfer, respectively. The sensitivity and specificity of single cell arrays was 100 and 88.8%, respectively. In both cycles a single embryo was transferred, resulting in pregnancy following the second cycle. The embryo giving rise to the pregnancy was normal/balanced for the insertion and translocation but carried a trisomy 8 and nullisomy 9 in one of the two biopsied blastomeres. After 7 weeks of pregnancy the couple miscarried. Genetic analysis following hystero-embryoscopy showed a diploid (90%)/tetraploid (10%) mosaic chorion, while the gestational sac was empty. No chromosome 8 aneuploidy was detected in the chorion, while 8% of the cells carried a monosomy for chromosome 9. In summary, we demonstrate the feasibility and determine the accuracy of single cell array technology to test against transmission of the unbalanced meiotic products that can derive from CRs. Our findings also demonstrate that the genomic constitution of extra-embryonic tissue cannot necessarily be predicted from the copy number status of a single blastomere.
Human Reproduction 02/2011; 26(4):941-9. · 4.59 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The first cell cycles following in vitro fertilization (IVF) of human gametes are prone to chromosome instability. Many, but often not all, blastomeres of an embryo acquire a genetic makeup during cleavage that is not representative of the original zygotic genome. Whole chromosomes are missegregated, but also structural rearrangements of chromosomes do occur in human cleavage stage embryogenesis following IVF. Analysis of pre- and postnatal DNA samples indicates that the in vivo human conceptions also endure instability of chromosome number and structure during cleavage of the fertilized oocyte. This embryonic chromosome instability not necessarily undermines normal human development, but may lead to a spectrum of conditions, including loss of conception, genetic disease and genetic variation development. In this review, the structural instability of chromosomes during human cleavage stage embryogenesis is catalogued, channeled into etiologic models and linked to genomic profiles of healthy and diseased newborns.
Cytogenetic and Genome Research 02/2011; 133(2-4):160-8. · 1.84 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Only 25 to 30% of conceptions result in a live birth. There is mounting evidence that the cause for this low fecundity is an extremely high incidence of chromosomal rearrangements occurring in the cleavage stage embryo. In this review, we gather all recent evidence for an extraordinary degree of mosaicisms in early embryogenesis. The presence of the rearrangements seen in the cleavage stage embryos can explain the origins of the placental mosaicisms seen during chorion villi sampling as well as the chromosomal anomalies seen in early miscarriages. Whereas these rearrangements often lead to implantation failure and early miscarriages, natural selection of the fittest cells in the embryo is the likely mechanism leading to healthy fetuses.
Current Genomics 09/2010; 11(6):397-401. · 2.87 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Preimplantation genetic screening is being scrutinized, as recent randomized clinical trials failed to observe the expected significant increase in live birth rates following fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH)-based screening. Although these randomized clinical trials are criticized on their design, skills or premature stop, it is generally believed that well-designed and well-executed randomized clinical trials would resolve the debate about the potential benefit of preimplantation genetic screening. Since FISH can analyze only a limited number of chromosomal loci, some of the embryos transferred might be diagnosed as 'normal' but in fact be aneuploid for one or more chromosomes not tested. Hence, genome-wide array comparative genome hybridization screening enabling aneuploidy detection of all chromosomes was thought to be a first step toward a better design. We recently showed array screening indeed enables accurate determination of the copy number state of all chromosomes in a single cell. Surprisingly, however, this genome-wide array screening revealed a much higher frequency and complexity of chromosomal aberrations in early embryos than anticipated, with imbalances in a staggering 90% of all embryos. The mitotic error rate in cleavage stage embryos was proven to be higher than the meiotic aneuploidy rate and as a consequence, the genome of a single blastomere is not representative for the genome of the other cells of the embryo. Hence, potentially viable embryos will be discarded upon screening a single blastomere. This observation provides a biological basis for the failure of the randomized clinical trials to increase baby-take-home rates using FISH on cleavage stage embryos.
Human Reproduction 08/2009; 24(11):2679-82. · 4.59 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chromosome instability is a hallmark of tumorigenesis. This study establishes that chromosome instability is also common during early human embryogenesis. A new array-based method allowed screening of genome-wide copy number and loss of heterozygosity in single cells. This revealed not only mosaicism for whole-chromosome aneuploidies and uniparental disomies in most cleavage-stage embryos but also frequent segmental deletions, duplications and amplifications that were reciprocal in sister blastomeres, implying the occurrence of breakage-fusion-bridge cycles. This explains the low human fecundity and identifies post-zygotic chromosome instability as a leading cause of constitutional chromosomal disorders.
Nature medicine 05/2009; 15(5):577-83. · 28.05 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) and Von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) are dominantly inherited late onset cancer predisposition syndromes caused by mutations in the respective tumor suppressor genes (TSGs) NF1 and VHL. Less frequently TSGs are partially or fully deleted. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) for cancer predisposition can be applied to select against the mutant allele in carrier couples. However, microdeletions within a single cell can, at present, not be detected by molecular diagnostic methods usually applied for PGD of monogenic disorders.
We performed PGD using interphase fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) on single blastomeres for three couples of which the women carried a microdeletion. One patient had the recurrent 1.4 Mb microdeletion covering NF1, a second suffered from an intragenic NF1 deletion and the last had a deletion of VHL.
In total, seven PGD cycles were carried out for these couples, which resulted in the delivery of a healthy twin for the VHL microdeletion carrier.
FISH-based PGD is a straightforward approach to detect (micro)deletions in single blastomeres. It seems likely that the number of conditions for which PGD-FISH is beneficial will increase rapidly with the advent of high-resolution arrays.
Human Reproduction 04/2009; 24(6):1522-8. · 4.59 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: To test the hypothesis that patients with advanced maternal age (AMA) have a higher implantation rate (IR) after embryo transfer of embryos with a normal chromosomal pattern for the chromosomes studied with preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) compared with patients who had an embryo transfer without PGS.
Prospective randomized controlled trial (RCT).
Academic tertiary setting.
Patients with AMA (> or =35 years).
In an RCT, the clinical IR per embryo transferred was compared after embryo transfer on day 5 or 6 between the PGS group (analysis of chromosomes 13, 16, 18, 21, 22, X, and Y) and the Control group without PGS.
No differences were observed between the PGS group and the Control group for the clinical IR (15.1%; 14.9%; rate ratio 1.01; exact confidence interval [CI], 0.25-5.27), the ongoing IR (at 12 weeks) (9.4%; 14.9%), and the live born rate per embryo transferred (9.4%; 14.9%; rate ratio 0.63; exact CI, 0.08-3.37). Fewer embryos were transferred in the PGS group (1.6 +/- 0.6) than in the Control group (2.0 +/- 0.6). A normal diploid status was observed in 30.3% of the embryos screened by PGS.
In this RCT, the results did not confirm the hypothesis that PGS results in improved reproductive outcome in patients with AMA.
Fertility and sterility 02/2009; 93(2):364-73. · 4.30 Impact Factor