Preimplantation genetic diagnosis: Analysis of gene expression, nuclear DNA and cytoplasmic DNA

Nury Miranda Steuerwald, Florida International University


Preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) following in vitro fertilization (IVF) offers couples at risk for transmitting genetic disorders the opportunity to identify affected embryos prior to replacement. In particular, embryo gender determination permits screening for X-linked diseases of unknown etiology. Analysis of embryos can be performed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of material obtained by micromanipulation. This approach provides an alternative to the termination of an established pregnancy following chorionic villi sampling or amniocentesis. ^ Lately, the focus of preimplantation diagnosis and intervention has been shifting toward an attempt to correct cytoplasmic deficiencies. Accordingly, it is the aim of this investigation to develop methods to permit the examination of single cells or components thereof for clinical evaluation. In an attempt to lay the groundwork for precise therapeutic intervention for age related aneuploidy, transcripts encoding proteins believed to be involved in the proper segregation of chromosomes during human oocyte maturation were examined and quantified. Following fluorescent rapid cycle RT-PCR analysis it was determined that the concentration of cell cycle checkpoint gene transcripts decreases significantly as maternal age increases. Given the well established link between increasing maternal age and the incidence of aneuploidy, these results suggest that the degradation of these messages in aging oocytes may be involved with inappropriate chromosome separation during meiosis. ^ In order to investigate the cause of embryonic rescue observed following clinical cytoplasmic transfer procedures and with the objective of developing a diagnostic tool, mtDNA concentrations in polar bodies and subcellular components were evaluated. First, the typical concentration of mtDNA in human and mouse oocytes was determined by fluorescent rapid cycle PCR. Some disparity was noted between the copy numbers of individual cytoplasmic samples which may limit the use of the current methodology for the clinical assessment of the corresponding oocyte. ^

Subject Area

Biology, Molecular|Biology, Genetics|Biology, Cell|Health Sciences, Medicine and Surgery

Recommended Citation

Nury Miranda Steuerwald, "Preimplantation genetic diagnosis: Analysis of gene expression, nuclear DNA and cytoplasmic DNA" (January 1, 1999). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. Paper AAI9948360.