Folliculogenesis and acquisition of oocyte competence in cows
IVF success depends on hundreds of factors and details but the oocyte quality remains the most important and problematic issue. All antral follicles contain oocytes and all of them have that have reached their full size, can be aspirated, can mature and can be fertilized in vitro. But only a few will make it to embryo unless harvested at a very specific time/status. The conditions impacting the oocyte competence are essentially dependant on the follicular status. Growing follicles contains oocytes that have not completed their preparation, as they are still writing information (RNA), later, dominant follicles or follicles at the plateau phase, stop transcription and become candidates for development. Once in transcriptional arrest, the oocytes, if not ovulated in a short amount of time, do not always make good embryos. This window is affected by time and follicle size and looks like a bell curve. The following review further explain the physiological and molecular evidences that we have to illustrate the competence window and provides clues on how to optimize ovarian stimulation to maximise oocyte quality.
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