Abstract # 28:

Scheduled for Thursday, August 18, 2005 01:30 PM-02:30 PM: (Mayfair Room) Featured Speaker


ASSISTED REPRODUCTIVE TECHNOLOGY (ART): NEW METHODS FOR THE EXPERIMENTAL STUDY OF PRIMATE GROWTH, BEHAVIOR, AND GENETICS

G. P. Sackett
Infant Primate Research Laboratory of the National Primate Research Center and Center on Human Development and Disability, University of Washington, Box 357330, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
line
      Assisted Reproductive Technologies used in human clinics include conception by in vitro fertilization (IVF) and intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI). In animal experiments both methods can be used with embryo splitting (ES) to produce genetically identical offspring. ART offers unique opportunities for studying functional genetics, gene manipulation safety, and gene-environment interactions involved in growth, behavior, genetics, physiology, and health. ART has produced liveborn primates, but outcome research has concerned only reproduction, genetic, and pregnancy outcome issues. In the first primate research of its kind, we studied infant and early juvenile development of ICSI, IVF, and ES Macaca mulatta compared with monkeys produced by artificial insemination and by copulation. Offspring were delivered 10 days prematurely (25 caesarian section, 3 early vaginal) and were reared and tested under the same conditions. The primary goal was to assess ART developmental safety. We found no evidence of retarded growth or disabilities in neonatal behavior, infant cognition, or infant social behavior. We did find that ART infants had exceptionally high birth weights and accelerated rates of early infancy sensory-motor and cognitive behaviors. We conclude that ART can provide safe and practical windows into basic and applied problems in human and nonhuman primate developmental sciences, although the pregnancy success rate must be increased by advances in reproductive biology research. Supported by NIH grants HD12913-21 (G. Schatten PI), RR00166 (WaNPRC), HD02274 (CHDD).