Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Improvement of in vitro production of cattle embryos

The aim of our project was to improve in vitro production of cattle embryos by using chemically defined media supplemented with embryotrophic factors originating from oviduct secretions. To know and/or identify these factors, pools of serum free bovine oviduct conditioned media were prepared and tested for their ability to support embryo development. They were then ultrafiltrated through a 10 kDa cut off membrane. The retentate containing high molecular weight factors was added either to the filtrate or to one of three defined media: TCM 199, DMEM/F12 and mSOF. When this fraction was added to mSOF medium, embryo development up to the blastocyst stage reached 36% against 15% with mSOF or 14% with oviduct conditioned medium. These results open the way to the manufacture of simple media supporting embryo culture with reproducible results. It remains to identify these embryotrophic factors of the retentate. It could be interesting also to reconsider serum free bovine oviduct conditioned media in the light of recent developments on embryo culture such as the apparition of a large calf syndrome after nuclear transfer or culture in semisynthetic media. These anomalies were not observed with serum free medium.

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Université catholique de Louvain
Place Croix du Sud 3
1348 Louvain-la-Neuve
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