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Meiotic spindle and zona pellucida characteristics as predictors of embryonic development: a preliminary study using PolScope imaging

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      Abstract

      This study assesses meiotic spindle and zona pellucida characteristics using the PolScope, and analyses their relationship to embryonic development potential. A total of 205 matured oocytes retrieved from 25 patients undergoing ovarian stimulation were imaged for meiotic spindle and zona pellucida characteristics using the PolScope. After intracytoplasmic sperm injection, the oocytes were cultured and assessed for progression to blastocysts. Meiotic spindles were visualized in 78.0% of oocytes. Significantly more oocytes with visible spindles fertilized and progressed to blastocysts compared with oocytes without visible spindles. Oocytes with spindle retardance of >3 nm showed a greater progression to blastocysts compared with those with a retardance of 2–3 nm or <2 nm. More blastocysts were obtained from oocytes with spindle lengths of >12 nm than from oocytes with spindle lengths 10–12 nm or <10 nm. A difference in progression to blastocyst was observed in oocytes with a zona inner layer retardance of >3 nm compared with oocytes with retardance of 2–3 nm or <2 nm. Oocytes with an inner layer zona of 10–12 nm thickness showed better progression compared with those with a thickness of 8–10 nm or <8 nm. Quantitative measurement of length and retardance of the meiotic spindle and zona pellucida has a positive predictive value in relation to embryonic development.

      Keywords

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      Biography

      GA Rama Raju obtained his medical degree from Andhra Medical College, Visakhapatnam, India, and DNB in obstetrics and gynaecology from NBE, Government of India, New Delhi. He underwent training in ART at Kiel University, Bielefeld Institute of Reproduction, Germany and in PGD at the Centre for Reproductive Medicine, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium. He has been a member of the visiting faculty in obstetrics and gynaecology at Justus Liebig University, Frankfurt, Germany. He is currently the director of Krishna IVF Clinic, a recognized centre for laparoscopy training. His research interests include reproductive endocrinology, vitrification of gametes and ovarian tissue and PGD.