Hiendleder, Stefan and Bebbere, Daniela and Zakhartchenko, Valeri and Reichenbach, Horst-Dieter and Wenigerkind, Hendrik and Ledda, Sergio and Wolf, Eckhard (2004) Maternal-fetal transplacental leakage of mitochondrial dna in bovine nuclear transfer pregnancies: potential implications for offspring and recipients. Cloning and Stem Cells, Vol. 6 (2), p. 150-156. eISSN 1557-7457. Article.
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The synepitheliochorial placenta of ruminants is constructed of multiple tissue layers that separate maternal and fetal blood. In nuclear transfer cloned ruminants, however, placental anomalies such as abnormal vascular development and hemorrhagic cotyledons have been reported. We have investigated the possible exchange of genetic material between somatic cell nuclear transfer cloned (SCNT) bovine fetuses and recipients at day 80 of gestation using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) as a marker. Twenty-three recovered SCNT-fetuses and their recipients were screened for divergent and thus informative mtDNA combinations. Twenty-one fetuses generated by in vitro fertilization (IVF) or multiple ovulation embryo transfer (MOET) and the corresponding recipients served as controls. A search for recipient mtDNA haplotype in DNA extracts from fetal blood by PCR-RFLP analysis revealed three cases of chimerism (two SCNT, one IVF) among a total of 19 informative fetus–recipient pairs (eight SCNT, seven IVF, four MOET). Placental anomalies have also been observed in some IVF fetuses and the present data therefore suggests transplacental leakage of cell components or cells from the recipient into some fetuses generated by in vitro techniques. Further studies are necessary to determine (i) the nature of leaked material, (ii) whether there is bi-directional leakage, and (iii) whether leaked material is present in recipients and calves after parturition, i.e. whether leakage takes place in vivo. If recipients were chimeric for DNA or cells derived from genetically modified SCNT (or IVF) embryos, their subsequent utilization might be affected.
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