Journal article

Calcium-free vitrification reduces cryoprotectant-induced zona pellucida hardening and increases fertilization rates in mouse oocytes

MG Larman, CB Sheehan, DK Gardner



Despite the success of embryo cyropreservation, routine oocyte freezing has proved elusive with only around 200 children born since the first reported birth in 1986. The reason for the poor efficiency is unclear, but evidence of zona pellucida hardening following oocyte freezing indicates that current protocols affect oocyte physiology. Here we report that two cryoprotectants commonly used in vitrification procedures, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and ethylene glycol, cause a large transient increase in intracellular calcium concentration in mouse metaphase II (MII) oocytes comparable to the initial increase triggered at fertilization. Removal of extracellular calcium from the medium failed to a..

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University of Melbourne Researchers