Importance of Cytoplasmic Granularity of Human Oocytes in In Vitro Fertilization Treatments


The aim of this study was to examine the effect of different stimulation protocols on oocyte granularity and to determine the influence of cytoplasmic granularity on further embryo development. A total of 2448 oocytes from 393 intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) cycles were analysed retrospectively. Oocytes were classified into 5 groups according to cytoplasmic granularity. (A) no granule or 1–2 small (<5 μm) granules; (B) more than 3 small granules; (C) large granules (>5 μm); (D) refractile body; (E) dense centrally located granular area. Correlation between characteristics of hormonal stimulation, oocyte granularity and embryo development was analysed. The occurrence of cytoplasmic granularity was influenced by the patient’s age and characteristics of stimulation. The type of granulation had no effect on fertilization rate and zygote morphology. However, some type of granulation resulted in a lower cleavage rate and more fragmented embryos. Our results provided additional information on how hormonal stimulation affects oocyte quality. While cytoplasmic granularity seems not to have an effect on fertilization and embryo development, the presence of refractile body in the oocyte is associated with reduced cleavage rates and impaired embryo development.


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Fancsovits, P., Tóthné, Z.G., Murber, Á. et al. Importance of Cytoplasmic Granularity of Human Oocytes in In Vitro Fertilization Treatments. BIOLOGIA FUTURA 63, 189–201 (2012).

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  • Cytoplasmic granularity
  • hormonal stimulation
  • in vitro fertilization
  • oocyte quality
  • refractile body