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Position of the nucleus in mouse germinal vesicle–stage oocytes with different chromatin configurations

Shishova, K. V., Lavrentyeva, E. A., Khamidullina, A. I., Zatsepina, O. V.
Russian journal of developmental biology 2016 v.47 no.6 pp. 313-319
cell nucleolus, chromatin, humans, meiosis, mice, oocytes, phenotype
The mammalian germinal vesicle–stage (GV) oocytes are divided into two major types, NSN (non-surrounded nucleolus) and SN (surrounded nucleolus), and at least one intermediate type, pSN (partly surrounded nucleolus), based on large-scale chromatin configuration. In mice, the SN oocytes are considered to be the most meiotically competent, which explains active study of their phenotypic characteristics necessary for improvement of human reproductive technologies. One of such characteristics is the position of the GV (nucleus) relative to the center of the oocyte. However, the current data on this issue are contradictory and even completely absent for pSN oocytes. In this work, we have studied the GV position in 187 mouse GV oocytes belonging to NSN, SN, and pSN types using different approaches known from the literature. Our results suggest that (1) the most abundant in all examined types of oocytes are central GVs (43–66%) and the least abundant are peripheral GVs (12–39%); the pSN oocytes are closer to SN oocytes rather than to NSN oocytes according to the GV position; (3) the position of the nucleus in mouse GV oocytes is an ambiguous marker of large-scale chromatin configuration and, correspondingly, maturation competence of the oocyte; (4) the diversity of the GV position in NSN, SN, and pSN oocytes most likely reflects the ability of GVs to migrate; and (5) assessment of the GV position according to three variants (central, peripheral, and intermediate) is more informative as compared with two variants (central and peripheral).