Rapamycin Influences the Efficiency of In vitro Fertilization and Development in the Mouse: A Role for Autophagic Activation

  • Lee, Geun-Kyung (Department of Biomedical Science and Technology, Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology, Konkuk University) ;
  • Shin, Hyejin (Department of Biomedical Science and Technology, Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology, Konkuk University) ;
  • Lim, Hyunjung Jade (Department of Biomedical Science and Technology, Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology, Konkuk University)
  • Received : 2015.09.11
  • Accepted : 2015.10.07
  • Published : 2016.08.01


The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) regulates cellular processes such as cell growth, metabolism, transcription, translation, and autophagy. Rapamycin is a selective inhibitor of mTOR, and induces autophagy in various systems. Autophagy contributes to clearance and recycling of macromolecules and organelles in response to stress. We previously reported that vitrified-warmed mouse oocytes show acute increases in autophagy during warming, and suggested that it is a natural response to cold stress. In this follow-up study, we examined whether the modulation of autophagy influences survival, fertilization, and developmental rates of vitrified-warmed mouse oocytes. We used rapamycin to enhance autophagy in metaphase II (MII) oocytes before and after vitrification. The oocytes were then subjected to in vitro fertilization (IVF). The fertilization and developmental rates of vitrified-warmed oocytes after rapamycin treatment were significantly lower than those for control groups. Modulation of autophagy with rapamycin treatment shows that rapamycin-induced autophagy exerts a negative influence on fertilization and development of vitrified-warmed oocytes.




Supported by : Ministry of Health & Welfare


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