Published online by Cambridge University Press: 05 October 2018
Maturing oocytes have diverse developmental potential and good quality oocytes exhibit a better ability to attain physiological milestones in a time-dependent manner. This situation necessitates the confirmation of oocyte developmental status more precisely under an in vitro embryo production (IVEP) regime. The aim of this study was to explain timely events in germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD), an important milestone of oocyte nuclear maturation, to delineate the developmental capacity of Bubalus bubalis oocytes. In addition, the expression profile of genes responsible for GVBD was assessed in order to understand the molecular context responsible for GVBD. The chronology of GVBD events at different time intervals during in vitro maturation (IVM) suggests that the rate at which oocytes undergo GVBD was strikingly different in the brilliant cresyl blue (BCB)+ and BCB− groups. The expression of AKT and CDC25B genes for BCB+ oocytes was maximum at 8 h of IVM, and CCNB (cyclin B) peaked at around 10 h, which suggested that GVBD was finished after 10 h in BCB+ oocytes, whereas the expression of AKT and CDC25B was found to peak at around 12–14 h of IVM. This difference consequently delays the GVBD event by 2–4 h in BCB− oocytes. Poor abundance of gene transcripts was mainly implicated in delay and lower rate of GVBD in BCB− oocytes which in turn strongly affected the translational ability of oocytes to blastocysts. The findings of this study support the idea that there is a propensity in sub-optimal grade oocytes for delayed GVBD that compromises the developmental ability of low grade buffalo oocytes. The study highlights the very small, but importantly vital and separate, time window of the GVBD event during which the competence levels of buffalo oocytes are altered along with their translational ability to develop into the prospective embryos.
These authors contributed equally to this work.