The impact of oocyte maturation media on early bovine embryonic development

D. Fischer Russell, S. Baqir, J. Bordignon, D. H. Betts*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

59 Citations (Scopus)


Successful production of high quality blastocysts in vitro depends on the use of a culture system that ensures the acquisition of developmental competence by the maturing oocyte. It is now clear that the in vitro maturation environment has a major influence on the oocyte's ability to acquire the potential to develop into blastocysts. In this work we examine the impact of oocyte culture media on the quality of blastocysts by comparing developmental rates, cell number and their allocation to embryonic cell lineages, apoptosis, and expression of developmentally important genes. Higher total cell count and ICM:TCN ratio, which are indicative of embryo viability, were observed in embryos derived from oocyte maturation in TCM-199 supplemented with serum when compared to blastocysts derived from oocyte maturation in SOF BSA. Moreover, oocyte maturation in TCM-199 supplemented with serum-generated embryos of higher morphological quality and producing higher levels of Interferon Tau transcripts when compared to embryos derived from oocyte maturation in SOF BSA. In conclusion, the oocyte maturation regimen affected the morphological feature of blastocysts, including total cell count and allocation of cells to trophectoderm (TE) and inner cell mass (ICM) lineages and the expression profiles of genes involved in various embryo functions such as early embryonic growth, regulation of gene transcription, trophoblast differentiation and function, embryo-maternal communication, and stress response. Our results show that the oocyte culture media have strong impact on the quality of embryos produced in vitro and emphasize the need for more in depth evaluation of oocyte maturation protocols.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1255-1270
Number of pages16
JournalMolecular Reproduction and Development
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Apoptosis
  • Cell lineage allocation
  • Gene expression
  • Protein supplements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Developmental Biology
  • Cell Biology


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