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Evaluation of zona pellucida birefringence intensity during in vitro maturation of oocytes from stimulated cycles

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Author(s): Petersen Claudia | Vagnini Laura | Mauri Ana | Massaro Fabiana | Silva Liliane | Cavagna Mario | Baruffi Ricardo | Oliveira Joao | Franco José

Journal: Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology
ISSN 1477-7827

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 53;
Date: 2011;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Abstract Background This study evaluated whether there is a relationship between the zona pellucida birefringence (ZP-BF) intensity and the nuclear (NM) and cytoplasmic (CM) in vitro maturation of human oocytes from stimulated cycles. Results The ZP-BF was evaluated under an inverted microscope with a polarizing optical system and was scored as high/positive (when the ZP image presented a uniform and intense birefringence) or low/negative (when the image presented moderate and heterogeneous birefringence). CM was analyzed by evaluating the distribution of cortical granules (CGs) throughout the ooplasm by immunofluorescence staining. CM was classified as: complete, when CG was localized in the periphery; incomplete, when oocytes presented a cluster of CGs in the center; or in transition, when oocytes had both in clusters throughout cytoplasm and distributed in a layer in the cytoplasm periphery Nuclear maturation: From a total of 83 germinal vesicle (GV) stage oocytes, 58 of oocytes (69.9%) reached NM at the metaphase II stage. From these 58 oocytes matured in vitro, the high/positively scoring ZP-BF was presented in 82.7% of oocytes at the GV stage, in 75.8% of oocytes when at the metaphase I, and in 82.7% when oocytes reached MII. No relationship was observed between NM and ZP-BF positive/negative scores (P = 0.55). These variables had a low Pearson's correlation coefficient (r = 0.081). Cytoplasmic maturation: A total of 85 in vitro-matured MII oocytes were fixed for CM evaluation. Forty-nine oocytes of them (57.6%) showed the complete CM, 30 (61.2%) presented a high/positively scoring ZP-BF and 19 (38.8%) had a low/negatively scoring ZP-BF. From 36 oocytes (42.3%) with incomplete CM, 18 (50%) presented a high/positively scoring ZPBF and 18 (50%) had a low/negatively scoring ZP-BF. No relationship was observed between CM and ZP-BF positive/negative scores (P = 0.42). These variables had a low Pearson's correlation coefficient (r = 0.11). Conclusions The current study demonstrated an absence of relationship between ZP-BF high/positive or low/negative score and nuclear and cytoplasmic in vitro maturation of oocytes from stimulation cycles.
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