Placental abnormalities associated with post-natal mortality in sheep somatic cell clones
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A total of 93 blastocysts obtained by nuclear transfer of somatic cells (granulosa cells) were transferred into 41 recipient ewes, and pregnancies were monitored by ultrasound scanning. In vitro derived, fertilized embryos (IVF, n=123) were also transferred to assess oocyte competence, and naturally mated ewes (n=120) were analysed as well. Cloned embryos developed to the blastocysts stage and implanted at the same rate as IVF embryos. After day 30, dramatic losses occurred, and only 12 out of 93 (13%)clones reached full term development, compared to 51 out of 123 (41,6%) lamb born from the IVF control embryos.Detailed analysis showed a wide range of placental abnormalities as well as some serious abnormalities in cloned born.
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