scholarly journals H3K27me3 at Pericentromeric Heterochromatin is a Defining Feature of the Early Mouse Blastocyst

Mélanie Pailles ◽  
Mélanie Hirlemann ◽  
Vincent Brochard ◽  
Martine Chebrout ◽  
Jean-François Oudin ◽  

Abstract Early mouse development is characterized by structural and epigenetic changes at the chromatin level while cells progress towards differentiation. At blastocyst stage, the segregation of the three primordial lineages is accompanied by establishment of differential patterns of DNA methylation and post-translational modifications of histones, such as H3K27me3. In this study, we have analysed the dynamics of H3K27me3 at pericentromeric heterochromatin (PCH) during development of the mouse blastocyst, in comparison with cultured embryonic cells. We show that this histone modification is first enriched at PCH in the whole embryo and evolves into a diffuse distribution in epiblast during its specification and maturation. Concomitantly, the level of transcription from major satellite decreases. Stem cells derived from blastocyst (naïve ESCs and TSCs) do not fully maintain the H3K27me3 enrichment at PCH. Moreover, the dynamic of H3K27me3 at PCH during in vitro conversion from naïve to primed pluripotent state and during ESCs derivation suggests that the mechanisms underlying the control of this histone mark at PCH are different in embryo and in vitro. We also conclude that the non-canonical presence of H3K27me3 at PCH is a defining feature of embryonic cells in the young blastocyst before epiblast segregation.

Development ◽  
1977 ◽  
Vol 40 (1) ◽  
pp. 91-100
Russell L. Deter

To facilitate a quantitative morphological analysis of early mouse development under controlled conditions, a perfusion culture system capable of supporting embryogenesis to blastocyst stage has been developed. The use of a mesh system allows identification of individual embryos by position, and control of their orientation during culture and preparation for light and electron microscopy. Quantitative evaluation of tissue-processing procedures has permitted selection of conditions which reduce changes in linear dimensions to −1·6 ± 1·8 % in two-cell embryos. Through the definition of a coordinate system based on mesh structure and the development of a special sectioning procedure, sections can be localized within the intact embryo and three-dimensional coordinates given to any element of embryo volume.

Cells ◽  
2021 ◽  
Vol 10 (11) ◽  
pp. 3111
Po-Yu Lin ◽  
Denny Yang ◽  
Chi-Hsuan Chuang ◽  
Hsuan Lin ◽  
Wei-Ju Chen ◽  

The developmental potential within pluripotent cells in the canonical model is restricted to embryonic tissues, whereas totipotent cells can differentiate into both embryonic and extraembryonic tissues. Currently, the ability to culture in vitro totipotent cells possessing molecular and functional features like those of an early embryo in vivo has been a challenge. Recently, it was reported that treatment with a single spliceosome inhibitor, pladienolide B (plaB), can successfully reprogram mouse pluripotent stem cells into totipotent blastomere-like cells (TBLCs) in vitro. The TBLCs exhibited totipotency transcriptionally and acquired expanded developmental potential with the ability to yield various embryonic and extraembryonic tissues that may be employed as novel mouse developmental cell models. However, it is disputed whether TBLCs are ‘true’ totipotent stem cells equivalent to in vivo two-cell stage embryos. To address this question, single-cell RNA sequencing was applied to TBLCs and cells from early mouse embryonic developmental stages and the data were integrated using canonical correlation analyses. Differential expression analyses were performed between TBLCs and multi-embryonic cell stages to identify differentially expressed genes. Remarkably, a subpopulation within the TBLCs population expressed a high level of the totipotent-related genes Zscan4s and displayed transcriptomic features similar to mouse two-cell stage embryonic cells. This study underscores the subtle differences between in vitro derived TBLCs and in vivo mouse early developmental cell stages at the single-cell transcriptomic level. Our study has identified a new experimental model for stem cell biology, namely ‘cluster 3’, as a subpopulation of TBLCs that can be molecularly defined as near totipotent cells.

Development ◽  
1985 ◽  
Vol 88 (1) ◽  
pp. 209-217
Janet L. Wiebold ◽  
Gary B. Anderson

2- to 4-cell and morula- to blastocyst-stage mouse embryos were cultured for 1 h in tritiated leucine at two specific activities and their subsequent development followed in vitro and in vivo (after transfer to recipients), respectively. 2- to 4-cell embryos that incorporated an average of 42 d.p.m. per embryo were impaired in their ability to develop to the morula and blastocyst stage. Recipients receiving morulae and blastocysts that had incorporated an average of 384 d.p.m. per embryo failed to produce young. Reduction of the specific activity improved the viability of embryos both in vitro and in vivo but development was still less than that of unlabelled embryos. Protein degradation curves were different for both 2- to 4-cell and morulato blastocyst-stage embryos labelled at the two different specific activities. Most studies using tritiated amino acids have employed higher specific activities than those used here and they may have to be reevaluated due to the possibility of radiation-induced artifacts.

Development ◽  
1980 ◽  
Vol 55 (1) ◽  
pp. 211-225
E. Lehtonen ◽  
R. A. Badley

The immunofluorescence technique was used to detect the presence and distribution of actin, alpha-actinin, tubulin and 10 nm filament protein in early mouse embryos. Actin and alpha-actinin stainings showed a distinct concentration to a peripheral layer in the cleavage-stage blastomeres and in trophectoderm cells. Dots of fluorescence appeared in this cortical staining pattern. The distribution of tubulin staining in the blastomere cytoplasm was relatively even with apparent concentration at the perinuclear region and frequently at wide intercellular contact areas. 10 nm filament protein was distributed evenly in the blastomere cytoplasm without cortical concentration of the label. At the blastocyst stage, the trophectoderm cells in blastocyst outgrowths in vitro developed well organized cytoskeletons including both microfilament, microtubule and 10 nm filament elements. Comparable structures were not observed in blastocysts in vivo, or in late hatched blastocysts cultured in suspension. The morphogenetic significance of the observations is discussed.

2000 ◽  
Vol 14 (16) ◽  
pp. 2072-2084
Babette S. Heyer ◽  
Alasdair MacAuley ◽  
Ole Behrendtsen ◽  
Zena Werb

Gastrulation in mice is associated with the start of extreme proliferation and differentiation. The potential cost to the embryo of a very rapid proliferation rate is a high production of damaged cells. We demonstrate a novel surveillance mechanism for the elimination of cells damaged by ionizing radiation during mouse gastrulation. During this restricted developmental window, the embryo becomes hypersensitive to DNA damage induced by low dose irradiation (<0.5 Gy) and undergoes apoptosis without cell cycle arrest. Intriguingly, embryonic cells, including germ cell progenitors, but not extraembryonic cells, become hypersensitive to genotoxic stress and undergo Atm- and p53-dependent apoptosis. Thus, hypersensitivity to apoptosis in the early mouse embryo is a cell fate-dependent mechanism to ensure genomic integrity during a period of extreme proliferation and differentiation.

Reproduction ◽  
2006 ◽  
Vol 132 (3) ◽  
pp. 423-434 ◽  
G Manandhar ◽  
D Feng ◽  
Y-J Yi ◽  
L Lai ◽  
J Letko ◽  

Centrin is an evolutionarily conserved 20 kDa, Ca+2-binding, calmodulin-related protein associated with centrioles and basal bodies of phylogenetically diverse eukaryotic cells. Earlier studies have shown that residual centrosomes of non-rodent mammalian spermatozoa retain centrin and, in theory, could contribute this protein for the reconstruction of the zygotic centrosome after fertilization. The present work shows that CEN2 and CEN3 mRNA were detected in germinal vesicle-stage (GV) oocytes, MII oocytes, and pre-implantation embryos from the two-cell through the blastocyst stage, but not in spermatozoa. Boar ejaculated spermatozoa possess centrin as revealed by immunofluorescence microscopy and western blotting. Immature, GV oocytes possess speckles of centrin particles in the perinuclear area, visualized by immunofluorescence microscopy and exhibit a 19 kDa band revealed by western blotting. Mature MII stage oocytes lacked centrin that could be detected by immunofluorescence or western blotting. The sperm centrin was lost in zygotes afterin vitrofertilization. It was not detectable in embryos by immunofluorescence microscopy until the late blastocyst stage. Embryonic centrin first appeared as fine speckles in the perinuclear area of some interphase blastocyst cells and as putative centrosomes of the spindle poles of dividing cells. The cells of the hatched blastocysts developed centrin spots comparable with those of the cultured cells. Some blastomeres displayed undefined curved plate-like centrin-labeled structures. Anti-centrin antibody labeled interphase centrosomes of cultured pig embryonic fibroblast cells as distinct spots in the juxtanuclear area. Enucleated pig oocytes reconstructed by electrofusion with pig fibroblasts displayed centrin of the donor cell during the early stages of nuclear decondensation but became undetectable in the late pronuclear or cleavage stages. These observations suggest that porcine zygotes and pre-blastocyst embryonic cells lack centrin and do not retain exogenously incorporated centrin. The early embryonic centrosomes function without centrin. Centrin in the blastocyst stage embryos is likely a result ofde novosynthesis at the onset of differentiation of the pluripotent blastomeres.

eLife ◽  
2018 ◽  
Vol 7 ◽  
Jan J Zylicz ◽  
Maud Borensztein ◽  
Frederick CK Wong ◽  
Yun Huang ◽  
Caroline Lee ◽  

Early mouse development is regulated and accompanied by dynamic changes in chromatin modifications, including G9a-mediated histone H3 lysine 9 dimethylation (H3K9me2). Previously, we provided insights into its role in post-implantation development (Zylicz et al., 2015). Here we explore the impact of depleting the maternally inherited G9a in oocytes on development shortly after fertilisation. We show that G9a accumulates typically at 4 to 8 cell stage to promote timely repression of a subset of 4 cell stage-specific genes. Loss of maternal inheritance of G9a disrupts the gene regulatory network resulting in developmental delay and destabilisation of inner cell mass lineages by the late blastocyst stage. Our results indicate a vital role of this maternally inherited epigenetic regulator in creating conducive conditions for developmental progression and on cell fate choices.

2021 ◽  
Antonio Lentini ◽  
Huaitao Cheng ◽  
Joyce Carol Noble ◽  
Natali Papanicolaou ◽  
Christos Coucoravas ◽  

X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) and upregulation (XCU) are the major opposing chromosome-wide modes of gene regulation that collectively achieve dosage compensation in mammals, but the regulatory link between the two remains elusive. Here, we use allele-resolved single-cell RNA-seq combined with chromatin accessibility profiling to finely dissect the separate effects of XCI and XCU on RNA levels during mouse development. We uncover that balanced X dosage is flexibly attained through expression tuning by XCU in a sex- and lineage-specific manner along varying degrees of XCI and across developmental and cellular states. Male blastomeres achieve XCU upon zygotic genome activation while females experience two distinct waves of XCU, upon imprinted- and random XCI, and ablation of Xist impedes female XCU. Contrary to widely established models of mammalian dosage compensation, naïve female embryonic cells carrying two active X chromosomes do not exhibit upregulation but express both alleles at basal level, yet collectively exceeding the RNA output of a single hyperactive allele. We show, in vivo and in vitro, that XCU is kinetically driven by X-specific modulation of transcriptional burst frequency, coinciding with increased compartmentalization of the hyperactive allele. Altogether, our data provide unprecedented insights into the dynamics of mammalian XCU, prompting a revised model of the chain in events of allelic regulation by XCU and XCI in unitedly achieving stable cellular levels of X-chromosome transcripts.

Reproduction ◽  
2020 ◽  
Vol 159 (1) ◽  
pp. 1-13 ◽  
Wei Cui ◽  
Agnes Cheong ◽  
Yongsheng Wang ◽  
Yuran Tsuchida ◽  
Yong Liu ◽  

Microspherule protein 1 (MCRS1, also known as MSP58) is an evolutionarily conserved protein that has been implicated in various biological processes. Although a variety of functions have been attributed to MCRS1 in vitro, mammalian MCRS1 has not been studied in vivo. Here we report that MCRS1 is essential during early murine development. Mcrs1 mutant embryos exhibit normal morphology at the blastocyst stage but cannot be recovered at gastrulation, suggesting an implantation failure. Outgrowth (OG) assays reveal that mutant blastocysts do not form a typical inner cell mass (ICM) colony, the source of embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Surprisingly, cell death and histone H4 acetylation analysis reveal that apoptosis and global H4 acetylation are normal in mutant blastocysts. However, analysis of lineage specification reveals that while the trophoblast and primitive endoderm are properly specified, the epiblast lineage is compromised and exhibits a severe reduction in cell number. In summary, our study demonstrates the indispensable role of MCRS1 in epiblast development during early mammalian embryogenesis.

Development ◽  
1998 ◽  
Vol 125 (1) ◽  
pp. 61-69 ◽  
K. Svensson ◽  
R. Mattsson ◽  
T.C. James ◽  
P. Wentzel ◽  
M. Pilartz ◽  

Transcriptional silencing can reflect heritable, epigenetic inactivation of genes, either singly or in groups, during the life-time of an organism. This phenomenon is exemplified by parent-of-origin-specific inactivation events (genomic imprinting) for a subset of mammalian autosomal genes, such as H19. Very little is known, however, about the timing and mechanism(s) of silencing of the paternal H19 allele during mouse development. Using a novel in situ approach, we present evidence that the silencing of the paternal H19 allele is progressive in the trophectodermal lineage during early mouse development and generates variegated expression patterns. The silencing process apparently involves recruitment of histone deacetylases since the mosaic paternal-specific H19 expression reappears in trichostatin A-treated mouse conceptuses, undergoing in vitro organogenesis. Moreover, the paternal H19 alleles of PatDup.d7 placentas, in which a region encompassing the H19 locus of chromosome 7 is bipaternally derived, partially escape the silencing process and are expressed in a variegated manner. We suggest that allele-specific silencing of H19 share some common features with chromatin-mediated silencing in position-effect variegation.

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