Abstract #36

# 36
M. Yang*1, J. Hall1, Q. Meng1, Z. Fan1, I. Polejaeva1, 1Department of Animal, Dairy and Veterinary Sciences, Utah State University, Logan, UT, USA.

Serial cloning by somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT) has been successful in several mammalian species. This method can be beneficial for transgenic line expansion or resetting the lifespan of transgenic cells. Previous studies in bovine and porcine have shown a decrease in efficiency over multiple iterations of serial cloning. However, the contradictory data has been reported in mice where no decrease in cloning efficiency was observed after 25 generations of recloning. To our knowledge, no data have been reported investigating the efficiency of serial cloning in goats. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether there is an effect of recloning on goat SCNT efficiency. αMHC-TGF-β1 fetal fibroblast cells (containing transforming growth factor-β under control of a cardiac-specific promoter) were produced by electroporation and used for the first round of SCNT. For serial cloning, we used neonatal fibroblast cells obtained from skin biopsies used as nuclear donors. These cells were collected from the transgenic cloned goats generated by the first round of SCNT. Cumulus-oocyte complexes recovered from abattoir-derived ovaries using slicing technique were matured in vitro for 20 to 24 h. The first polar body and metaphase plate were removed from a cumulus cell-free oocyte, and a donor fibroblast cell was subsequently transferred into the enucleated oocyte. Fused embryos were then activated for 5 min in 5 mm ionomycin followed by 4 h in 2 mm DMAP with 5 mg/mL cycloheximide. Activated embryos were cultured in G1 medium with 5 mg/mL BSA for 12 h, followed by surgical transfer into the oviducts of recipients synchronized to show oestrus within 12 h of SCNT. In total, 592 and 395 embryos were transferred to 37 and 25 recipient goats, respectively, for the first and second round of SCNT. Pregnancy rate, rate of pregnancy loss, and term rate were analysed by Chi-squared with a 2-tailed P-value. No significant difference was observed in Day 40 pregnancy rates (32.4 v. 36%) and term rates (32.4 v. 20%) between the first round of cloning and the successive recloning. However, the rate of pregnancy losses was significantly greater in recloning group (P < 0.05), with 4 out of 9 pregnancies lost between Day 40 of gestation and term, whereas no pregnancy losses were observed after Day 40 of gestation in the first-round cloning group. The greater pregnancy loss in the recloning procedure might be caused by accumulation of epigenetic errors resulting from incomplete reprogramming. We are assessing the DNA methylation pattern of differentially methylated regions (DMR) of 2 paternally imprinted genes (H19 and IGF2R) in the cloned and recloned goats and expect to see a difference in their imprinted gene DNA methylation pattern, which could explain the greater rate of pregnancy loss in recloned goats.