Pronuclear visibility, development and transgene expression in IVM/IVF-derived porcine embryos

H. M. Kubisch, M. A. Larson, H. Funahashi, B. N. Day, R. M. Roberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


A total of 1550 zygotes was used to assess the timing of pronuclear visibility, embryo development following DNA microinjection, and transgene expression in IVM/IVF-generated porcine embryos. After centrifugation, pronuclei could be seen in 61.6% of zygotes. In 55.3% of these only 1 pronucleus was visible. Pronuclear visibility was highest at 20 h post-insemination. Zygotes were microinjected with 1 of 2 LacZ gene constructs driven by either the SV40 early promoter (pSVON) or the human cytoplasmic β actin promoter (pbActinLacZ). Development and transgene expression were assessed after either 48 h or 7 d in culture. After 48 h, significantly more zygotes with a single visible pronucleus developed to the 8-cell stage than zygotes in which no pronucleus had been seen (43.0 vs 24.8%), while those with 2 pronuclei were intermediate (31.4%). After 7 d, no difference in development to the morula stage was observed between noninjected control embryos (25.5%) and embryos with 1 (21.0%) or 2 pronuclei (22.5%); however, the proportion of embryos reaching the morula stage in the nonpronuclear group was significantly reduced (9.1%). After 48 h in culture, transgene expression was significantly higher in embryos with 2 pronuclei at the time of injection than in those with 1 (36.4 vs 17.9%). After 7 d in culture, 41.5% of morulae derived from zygotes with 2 pronuclei and 29.97% of thsoe derived from zygotes with 1 pronucleus showed signs of transgene expression. At this stage, significantly more morulae expressed the pbActinLacZ than the pSVON transgene (43.8 vs 25.8%). More than 80% of putative transgenic morulae or blastocysts showed evidence of mosaicism. These results demonstrate that IVM/IVF porcine embryos are able to develop in culture and express a microinjected transgene.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)391-401
Number of pages11
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • LacZ
  • in vitro fertilization
  • in vitro maturation
  • porcine embryos
  • transgenic expression

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Small Animals
  • Food Animals
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Equine


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