Experiments were carried out to develop and improve in vitro culture systems for IVM-IVF prepubertal goat oocytes. Cumulus oocyte complexes (COC) were obtained by slicing ovaries from slaughtered prepubertal goats. Oocytes were matured in TCM-199 supplemented with 20% estrous goat serum (EGS) + 10 μg/mL FSH + 10 μg/mL LH + 1μg/mL estradiol 17β for 27 h at 38.5°C in 5% CO2 in air. Matured oocytes were placed in drops of TALP- fert medium supplemented with hypotaurine (1μg/mL) and inseminated with freshly ejaculated spermatozoa following capacitation as described by Younis et al. (69) but with 100 μg/mL heparin. At 24 h post insemination the ova were transfered to various in vitro culture media, and early embryo development was evaluated until Day 8 post insemination. Specifically, in the studies described here, we have compared the effects of (Experiment 1) co-culture systems using oviductal ephitelial cells (OEC) and cumulus cells (CC), both caprine and bovine; (Experiment 2) the presence of serum and/or OEC; (Experiment 3) 4 culture media (TCM199, Ham's F10, CZB and SOF) for co- culture with OEC; and (Experiment 4) conditioned medium with OEC. In Experiment 1, the percentage of morulae plus blastocysts was higher in culture with OEC, both caprine and bovine (15.1 and 14.8%, respectively) than with CC (4.1 and 6.7%, respectively). In Experiment 2, the OEC with EGS did not improve the percentage of morulae and blastocysts obtained with OEC alone (14.3 and 23.1% respectively). In Experiment 3, this percentage was higher using OEC with TCM-199 compared to CZB medium (21.3 and 12.3%, respectively) and in Experiment 4, the results were 3.7, 11.2 and 21.3% for TCM-199 without cells, Conditioned Medium and co-culture with OEC, respectively.
- Embryo culture