3D culture of ovarian follicles: A system towards their engineering?

Maurizio Zuccotti*, Valeria Merico, Paola Rebuzzini, Martina Belli, Giulia Vigone, Francesca Mulas, Lorenzo Fassina, Wasco Wruck, James Adjaye, Riccardo Bellazzi, Silvia Garagna

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Infertility in women is a health priority. Designing a robust culture protocol capable of attaining complete follicle growth is an exciting challenge, for its potential clinical applications, but also as a model to observe and closely study the sequence of molecular events that lie behind the intricate relationship existing between the oocyte and surrounding follicle cells. Here, we describe the procedures used to maintain the ovarian follicle 3D architecture employing a variety of in vitro systems and several types of matrices. Collagen and alginate are the matrices that led to better results, including proof-of-concept of full-term development. Pioneer in its kind, these studies underlie the drawbacks encountered and the need for a culture system that allows more quantitative analyses and predictions, projecting the culture of the ovarian follicle into the realm of tissue engineering.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-216
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Developmental Biology
Issue number4-6
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • 3D culture
  • Alginate
  • Collagen
  • Matrix
  • Ovarian follicle
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Embryology
  • Developmental Biology


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