Gene expression profiling of mouse oocytes and preimplantation embryos

Francesca E. Duncan*, Richard M. Schultz

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

5 Scopus citations


Gene expression profiling using microarray technology is a robust, efficient, and cost-effective approach to assay a cell or tissue's transcriptome at a particular time or under a specific condition. Application of this technology to oocytes and preimplantation embryos has been limited largely because this biological material is difficult to acquire in sufficient quantities. We describe here a protocol to isolate and amplify mRNA from oocytes and preimplantation embryos that is suitable for microarray experiments. This protocol is based on a linear two-step amplification protocol using T7 RNA polymerase-based in vitro transcription and has been used to isolate more than 80 μg of cRNA from only 20 oocytes or preimplantation embryos. Gene expression profiling has provided insight into the molecular mechanisms of meiotic maturation, fertilization, and preimplantation embryo development. It has also been used to characterize female gametes and embryos from animals harboring gene-specific knockouts or knockdowns. Finally, this technology has been useful in evaluating how various Assisted Reproductive Technologies impact global patterns of gene expression in resulting embryos.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMethods in Enzymology
PublisherAcademic Press Inc
Number of pages24
StatePublished - 2010

Publication series

NameMethods in Enzymology
ISSN (Print)0076-6879

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Gene expression profiling of mouse oocytes and preimplantation embryos'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this