Chromatin configuration within the germinal vesicle of horse oocytes: changes post mortem and relationship to meiotic and developmental competence.
Additional Document Info
We evaluated the relationship of initial chromatin configuration to time of oocyte recovery and to nuclear maturation after culture in horse oocytes having compact (Cp) and expanded (Ex) cumuli. In addition, we evaluated the effect of oocyte type, time of recovery, and duration of culture on blastocyst development after intracytoplasmic sperm injection. In oocytes collected within 1 h of slaughter, fibrillar and intermediate chromatin configurations were more prevalent in Cp than in Ex oocytes (68% and 12%, respectively). In Cp oocytes collected after a 5- to 9-h delay, the proportions in the fibrillar and intermediate configurations decreased significantly, and the proportions of degenerating and homogeneously fluorescent configurations increased. When cultured, 20% of oocytes classified as having fibrillar chromatin resumed meiosis, whereas 82% of intermediate and 81% to 86% of condensed chromatin oocytes did so. Meiotic resumption was higher in oocytes recovered immediately after slaughter, but these oocytes took longer to mature. Duration of maturation significantly affected blastocyst development rates in Cp oocytes recovered after a delay (13% and 38% for oocytes matured 24 and 36 h, respectively). Oocytes recovered after a delay had higher blastocyst development rates than did those collected immediately after slaughter. We conclude that the fibrillar and intermediate chromatin configurations may degenerate during ovary storage, resulting in decreased maturation rates, especially of Cp oocytes. Time of oocyte recovery and duration of maturation significantly affect the rate of blastocyst development. Oocytes with Cp and Ex cumuli have similar developmental competence to the blastocyst stage.