Parthenogenetic embryos carry only maternal chromosomes and can be generated by inducing oocytes to resume meiosis without fertilization. Human oocytes can be par-thenogenetically activated by ethanol, acid Tyrode’s solution, calcium ionophore A23187, puromycin, and electrical stimulation at rates of 16%, 33%, 60%, 91%, and 95%, respectively. Development of parthenoge-netically activated murine oocytes progresses in a number of different ways, resulting in either haploid or diploid parthenogenones. Haploid parthenogenones result when the activated oocyte either extrudes a second polar body and forms one pronucleus, or when a second polar body is not extruded and the activated oocyte undergoes immediate cleavage (IC) to 2 cells. When there is no extrusion of a second polar body and the activated oocyte forms either one or two pronuclei, the parthenogenone is usually diploid.
Although murine parthenogenones can develop to postimplantation stages in vivo, human parthenogenetic embryos only develop to the 8-cell stage when cultured in vitro. This provides little information about the differential contribution of parental genomes to primate embryonic development. In humans, for ethical reasons, the development of parthenogenones to postimplantation stages cannot be studied as this would require transfer of genetically manipulated embryos. Full understanding of the role the parental genomes play in postimplantation human development requires a nonhuman primate model. ampicillin antibiotic
The common marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus) is a small New World primate that routinely produces 2-3 follicles per 28-day cycle. This species is particularly suited to studies of postimplantation development since the ovarian cycle can be synchronized using a prostaglandin F2a analogue, follicular aspiration has been developed, embryo transfer is highly successful, and early postimplantation development in the marmoset has been described. Here we report partheno-genetic activation of marmoset oocytes using ethanol and electrical stimulation, the development of marmoset par-thenogenones in vitro, and the ability of parthenogenetic primate embryos to implant in vivo, after embryo transfer.