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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

In vitro fertilization and embryo transfer in the rhesus monkey.

Twenty-three rhesus monkeys were subjected to 9 days of ovarian hyperstimulation with sequential exposure to human follicle-stimulating hormone (hFSH) and then human luteinizing hormone (hLH) + hFSH. Six animals (26%) did not exhibit sustained, elevated levels of circulating estradiol, primarily due to the occurrence of a premature surge of endogenous LH (n = 4). Seventeen animals (74%) responded with supraphysiologic levels of circulating estradiol (peak value: means = 4480 pg/ml) and received human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) on Day 10. Oocytes were collected 26 h later by aspiration of large antral follicles. Oocyte quantity (means = 18/animal) and quality (63% mature) were evaluated by in vitro fertilization ( IVF), embryonic development, and embryo transfer to foster mothers. Modified conditions for the successful fertilization of oocytes used a Tyrode's augmented ( TALP) medium supplemented with 0.3% bovine serum albumin ( BSA). Oocytes were inseminated at the metaphase II stage with ejaculated, washed sperm (50 100 x 10(3)/ml) preexposed at ambient temperature to caffeine and dibutyryl cyclic adenosine 3'5'-monophosphate. Successful fertilization ranged from 26% to 75%. In one experiment, 5 of 11 embryos produced by IVF developed in vitro to hatched blastocysts. Embryo freezing employed a propanediol-based protocol and was applied to early cleavage-stage embryos with 100% (5 of 5) post-thaw survival. Two frozen-thawed embryos were transferred transtubally on 3 occasions into rhesus monkeys during the early luteal phase of spontaneous menstrual cycles. One pregnancy resulted, which proceeded normally to the unassisted delivery of a male offspring 170 days after the LH surge. We conclude that this sequential regimen of human gonadotropins provides a cohort of oocytes from rhesus monkeys that will complete meiotic maturation and fertilize in vitro, with embryonic development proceeding in vitro and in vivo. The production of putative antibodies to human gonadotropins, assessed by the presence of Protein A-precipitated hCG binding components in sera, limits the repeated use of monkeys in the hyperstimulation protocol. Nevertheless, this model system should facilitate further studies on oocyte maturation, fertilization, and early embryogenesis in primates.[1]


  1. In vitro fertilization and embryo transfer in the rhesus monkey. Wolf, D.P., Vandevoort, C.A., Meyer-Haas, G.R., Zelinski-Wooten, M.B., Hess, D.L., Baughman, W.L., Stouffer, R.L. Biol. Reprod. (1989) [Pubmed]
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