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Journal of Biomedical Optics • Open Access

Phase-subtraction cell-counting method for live mouse embryos beyond the eight-cell stage
Author(s): William C. Warger; Judith A. Newmark; Carol M. Warner; Charles A. DiMarzio

Paper Abstract

Since 1978 in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedures have resulted in the birth of over 3 million babies. Yet in 2005, IVF procedures had a live birth rate of only 34%, with 32% of these births resulting in multiple pregnancies. These multiple pregnancies were directly attributed to the transfer of multiple embryos to increase the probability that a single, healthy embryo was included. The predominantly accepted noninvasive viability markers for embryos created by IVF are (1) number of cells at specific time points during development and (2) overall morphology of the embryo. Currently, it is difficult to count the number of cells beyond the eight-cell stage noninvasively. We report a nontoxic cell-counting method capable of counting cell numbers ranging from 8 to 26 in live mouse embryos. This method is derived from the fusion of differential interference contrast and optical quadrature microscopy and is verified by epifluorescence images of Hoechst-stained nuclei. The phase-subtraction cell-counting method is the first accurate, nontoxic technique to count cells through the morula stage in mouse embryos and may enhance the use of cell number as a viability marker if adopted for use with human embryos in the IVF clinic.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 May 2008
PDF: 8 pages
J. Biomed. Opt. 13(3) 034005 doi: 10.1117/1.2937468
Published in: Journal of Biomedical Optics Volume 13, Issue 3
Show Author Affiliations
William C. Warger, Northeastern Univ. (United States)
Judith A. Newmark, Northeastern Univ. (United States)
Carol M. Warner, Northeastern Univ. (United States)
Charles A. DiMarzio, Northeastern Univ. (United States)

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