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CRi Oosight Imaging System a Key to Breakthrough Gene Replacement Method With Potential to Prevent Inherited Mitochondrial Diseases
Date:8/27/2009

WOBURN, Mass., Aug. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. researchers using CRi's Oosight(TM) imaging system have developed a gene transfer technique that has potential to prevent inherited diseases passed on from mothers to their children through mutated DNA in cell mitochondria. The research, which demonstrated the technique in rhesus monkeys, appears in the Aug. 26 issue of the journal Nature.

The group, headed by Dr. Shoukhrat Mitalipov of the Oregon National Primate Research Center and the Oregon Stem Cell Center, extracted the nuclear DNA from the mother's egg, guided by the Oosight system, and transplanted it into another egg that had the nucleus removed. The technique allowed the mother to pass along her nuclear genetic material to her offspring without her mitochondrial DNA. The eggs were fertilized and transplanted into surrogate mothers, resulting in the birth of four apparently healthy monkeys. Defects in DNA of mitochondria, the cell's "power plants," are associated with a wide range of human diseases.

The Oosight system solved a key problem in avoiding damage to the nuclear DNA during the transfer procedure by providing a non-invasive imaging technique for visualizing the genetic material. Traditional visualization methods employ a stain or involve exposure to ultraviolet light, either of which can damage DNA. The Oregon team had used the Oosight system in previous research, published in Nature in 2007, that provided a foundation for the current study. In that research, they cloned rhesus monkey embryos and used them to create embryonic stem cells.

The Oosight system uses polarized light to generate high-contrast, real-time images of biological features such as the spindle apparatus housing the chromosomes and other filamentous structures within the egg, such as the multi-layer zona pellucida, without the addition of toxic stains or labels, while simultaneo
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SOURCE Cambridge Research & Instrumentation, Inc.
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