Direct positive effect of epidermal growth factor on the cytoplasmic maturation of mouse and human oocytes

K. Das, L. E. Stout, H. C. Hensleigh, G. E. Tagatz, W. R. Phipps, B. S. Leung

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115 Scopus citations


Objective: Immature mammalian oocytes cultured in vitro undergo inadequate cytoplasmic maturation and hence have a limited potential for fertilization. Our primary objective was to determine if the addition of epidermal growth factor (EGF) to the in vitro culture system would have a positive effect on oocyte cytoplasmic maturation. Design: We studied the effect of different EGF concentrations on both denuded and cumulus-enclosed mouse oocytes cultured in vitro. Main Outcome Measures: The percentage of oocytes undergoing germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD) and polar body one formation over time as a function of EGF concentration was determined. Results: A dose-related positive effect of EGF on both GVBD and polar body one formation over time was observed for mouse oocytes. As well, a similar effect of EGF was seen on immature human oocytes that had not been stimulated with exogenous gonadotropins. Conclusions: The use of EGF may allow for the performance of successful in vitro fertilization procedures using immature human oocytes retrieved during unstimulated cycles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1000-1004
Number of pages5
JournalFertility and Sterility
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1991

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Received August 28, 1990; revised and accepted January 18, 1991. * Supported in part by the research grant R01 AA07733 (awarded to B.S.L.) from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Rockville, Maryland. t International Fellow of the American Association of University Women, Washington, D.C. :j: Reprint requests: Kamalini Das, M.D., Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Minnesota, UMHC Box 395, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55455.


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