Improving development of cloned goat embryos by supplementing α-lipoic acid to oocyte in vitro maturation medium

Theriogenology. 2013 Aug;80(3):228-33. doi: 10.1016/j.theriogenology.2013.03.027. Epub 2013 Jun 4.


α-Lipoic acid (LA) is a powerful antioxidant for clinical therapy of some metabolic diseases, but there are few reports about the effect of LA on animal occyte in vitro maturation (IVM). The objective of this study is to investigate the effect of supplementing LA to IVM medium on subsequently developmental competence of goat cloning embryos after somatic cell nucleus transfer (SCNT). Twenty-five micromolars LA significantly increased 12% oocyte maturation rate from control 57.8% to treated group 69.8% (P < 0.05). The reconstructed rate of cloning embryos in LA supplement group (67.3%) was significantly higher than control (56.5%, P < 0.05). Although the SCNT embryo cleavage rates did not have significant difference between the two groups (42.0% vs. 47.9%, P > 0.05), LA supplement group had significantly higher blastocyst formation rate and hatched rate than control (24.0% vs. 18.4% and 37.0% vs. 30.9%, respectively, P < 0.05). In addition, supplementing LA significantly reduced the cellular apoptosis rate of nucleus transfer blastocysts by inhibiting the expression of apoptotic activators, such as Bax, Bad, Caspase-3, and CytC genes and promoting cumulus-oocyte complexes to synthesize glutathione (GSH) and express antioxidant enzymes such as GPX4 and SOD genes. In conclusion, supplement of LA to oocyte IVM medium could improve the maturation rate and antioxidant ability of oocytes and increase the developmental competence of oocytes after SCNT.

Keywords: Anti-apoptosis; Antioxidant; In vitro maturation; Nucleus transfer; α-Lipoic acid.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Apoptosis
  • Cloning, Organism*
  • Culture Media / chemistry*
  • Embryo Culture Techniques / methods
  • Embryo Culture Techniques / veterinary*
  • Goats / embryology*
  • In Vitro Oocyte Maturation Techniques / veterinary*
  • Thioctic Acid / chemistry
  • Thioctic Acid / pharmacology*


  • Antioxidants
  • Culture Media
  • Thioctic Acid