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Embryos and embryonic stem cells from the white rhinoceros

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Item Type:Article
Title:Embryos and embryonic stem cells from the white rhinoceros
Creators Name:Hildebrandt, T.B. and Hermes, R. and Colleoni, S. and Diecke, S. and Holtze, S. and Renfree, M.B. and Stejskal, J. and Hayashi, K. and Drukker, M. and Loi, P. and Göritz, F. and Lazzari, G. and Galli, C.
Abstract:The northern white rhinoceros (NWR, Ceratotherium simum cottoni) is the most endangered mammal in the world with only two females surviving. Here we adapt existing assisted reproduction techniques (ART) to fertilize Southern White Rhinoceros (SWR) oocytes with NWR spermatozoa. We show that rhinoceros oocytes can be repeatedly recovered from live SWR females by transrectal ovum pick-up, matured, fertilized by intracytoplasmic sperm injection and developed to the blastocyst stage in vitro. Next, we generate hybrid rhinoceros embryos in vitro using gametes of NWR and SWR. We also establish embryonic stem cell lines from the SWR blastocysts. Blastocysts are cryopreserved for later embryo transfer. Our results indicate that ART could be a viable strategy to rescue genes from the iconic, almost extinct, northern white rhinoceros and may also have broader impact if applied with similar success to other endangered large mammalian species.
Keywords:Assisted Reproductive Techniques, Cell Differentiation, Cell Line, Embryonic Stem Cells, Endangered Species, Mammalian Embryo, Perissodactyla, Animals
Source:Nature Communications
ISSN:2041-1723
Publisher:Nature Publishing Group (U.K.)
Volume:9
Number:1
Page Range:2589
Date:4 July 2018
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-018-04959-2
PubMed:View item in PubMed

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