Primate follicular development and oocyte maturation in vitro

Jing Xu, Min Xu, Marcelo P. Bernuci, Thomas E. Fisher, Lonnie D. Shea, Teresa K. Woodruff, Mary B. Zelinski, Richard L. Stouffer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

44 Scopus citations


The factors and processes involved in primate follicular development are complex and not fully understood. An encapsulated three-dimensional (3D) follicle culture system could be a valuable in vitro model to study the dynamics and regulation of folliculogenesis in intact individual follicles in primates. Besides the research relevance, in vitro follicle maturation (IFM) is emerging as a promising approach to offer options for fertility preservation in female patients with cancer. This review summarizes the current published data on in vitro follicular development from the preantral to small antral stage in nonhuman primates, including follicle survival and growth, endocrine (ovarian steroid hormone) and paracrine/autocrine (local factor) function, as well as oocyte maturation and fertilization. Future directions include major challenges and strategies to further improve follicular growth and differentiation with oocytes competent for in vitro fertilization and subsequent embryonic development, as well as opportunities to investigate primate folliculogenesis by utilizing this 3D culture system. The information may be valuable in identifying optimal conditions for human follicle culture, with the ultimate goal of translating the experimental results and products to patients, thereby facilitating diagnostic and therapeutic approaches for female fertility.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOocyte Biology in Fertility Preservation
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media, LLC
Number of pages25
ISBN (Print)9781461482130
StatePublished - 2013

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)0065-2598


  • Fertility preservation
  • Folliculogenesis
  • In vitro follicle maturation
  • Primate
  • Three-dimensional follicle culture

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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