Development to term of mouse androgenetic aggregation chimeras

Jeff R. Mann, Colin L. Stewart

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25 Citations (Scopus)


Diploid androgenetic eggs contain two sperm-derived genomes, and only rarely develop to the early somite stage. Also, previous studies have indicated that androgenetic eggs cannot be rescued in aggregation chimeras beyond embryonic stages. Paradoxically, in blastocyst injection chimeras made with androgenetic embryonic stem (ES) cells of the 129/Sv strain, we previously obtained considerable improvement in developmental potential. Although considerable death occurred in utero, overtly normal chimeric fetuses and occasional postnatal chimeras that developed skeletal abnormalities were observed. Consequently, we have re-evaluated the developmental potential of androgenetic aggregation chimeras utilizing androgenetic eggs of the 129/Sv strain, and of the BALB/c and CD-1 strains for comparison. Regardless of strain, androgenetic aggregation chimeras were generally more inviable than previously observed with androgenetic ES cell chimeras, and often the embryo-proper was abnormal even when an androgenetic contribution was detected only in the extra-embryonic membranes. This is at least a partial explanation of the greater viability of androgenetic ES cell chimeras, as ES cells do not colonize significantly certain extra-embryonic tissues. Nevertheless, in the 129/Sv strain, occasional development of chimeras to term was obtained, and one chimera that survived postnatally developed identical skeletal abnormalities to those observed previously in androgenetic ES cell chimeras. This result demonstrates that at least one example of paternal imprinting is faithfully conserved in androgenetic ES cells. Also, the postnatal chimerism shows that androgenetic eggs can give rise to terminally differentiated cell types, and are therefore pluripotent. In contrast, only possibly one BALB/c and no CD-1 androgenetic aggregation chimeras developed to term. Therefore, the developmental potential of androgenetic aggregation chimeras is to some extent dependent on mouse strain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1325-1333
Number of pages9
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Androgenetic
  • Chimera
  • Embryo
  • Imprinting
  • Nuclear transplantation

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