Letter | Published:

Genetic control of haploid parthenogenetic development in mammalian embryos


THE establishment of haploid cell lines in mammals would be of value for studies on developmental biology, genetics and carcinogenesis. It should be possible to produce such lines by culturing cells from haploid parthenogenetic embryos. Only a limited degree of haploid parthenogenetic development has been obtained with mammals1–4, possibly as a result of the effects of deleterious recessive genes in haploid cells. During the process of selection necessary to produce an inbred strain of animals, there may be a reduction in the number of deleterious genes. Haploid embryos from random-bred animals that have not been subjected to the selection that occurs in inbreeding may, therefore, have a lower development potential than haploid embryos from an inbred strain. To test this possibility, we have compared the development of haploid embryos from one inbred strain of golden hamsters with random-bred animals and have found better development of haploid embryos in the inbred animals.

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