FRAP analysis of chromatin looseness in mouse zygotes that allows full-term development
by Masatoshi Ooga, Teruhiko WakayamaChromatin looseness, which can be analyzed by fluorescence recovery after photobleaching (FRAP) using eGFP-tagged core histone proteins, is an important index of the differentiation potential of blastomere cells and embryonic stem cells. Whether chromatin looseness is a reliable index of the developmental potential of embryos during ontogenesis is not known. As a necessary first step toward answering this question, we investigated whether FRAP-analyzed embryos are capable of normal preimplantation and full-term development. All tested concentrations (50, 100, and 250 ng/μL) of microinjected eGFP-H2B mRNA were sufficient for detecting differences in chromatin looseness between male and female pronuclei. After FRAP analysis, most of the zygotes developed into blastocysts. Importantly, a considerable number of offspring developed from the FRAP analyzed zygotes (32/78; 41.0%) and grew into healthy adults. The offspring of zygotes injected with 250 ng/μL of eGFP-H2B mRNA and bleached using 110 μW laser power for 5 s were not genetically modified. Interestingly, bleaching using a 3-fold stronger laser intensity for a 6-fold longer time did not cause toxicity during preimplantation development, indicating that bleaching did not critically affect preimplantation development. Finally, we confirmed that similar results were obtained using two different types of confocal laser-scanning microscopes. This FRAP protocol would be useful for investigating the association between chromatin looseness and development.
Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article
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