Research Papers: Gerotarget (Focus on Aging):

Caffeine delays oocyte aging and maintains the quality of aged oocytes safely in mouse

Xia Zhang, Xiaoyan Liu, Li Chen, Dan-Ya Wu, Zheng-Wen Nie, Ying-Ying Gao and Yi-Liang Miao _

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Oncotarget. 2017; 8:20602-20611. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.15292

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Xia Zhang1,3, Xiaoyan Liu1,2,4, Li Chen1,2, Dan-Ya Wu1,2, Zheng-Wen Nie1,2, Ying-Ying Gao1,2 and Yi-Liang Miao1,2,3

1 Institute of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology, College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China

2 Key Lab of Agricultural Animal Genetics, Breeding, and Reproduction of Ministry of Education, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, China

3 The Cooperative Innovation Center for Sustainable Pig Production, Wuhan, China

4 Reproductive Medicine Centre, Affiliated Hospital of Qingdao Medical University, Yuhuangding Hospital of Yantai, Yantai, Shandong, China

Correspondence to:

Yi-Liang Miao, email:

Keywords: oocyte aging, caffeine, mouse, oocyte quality, Gerotarget

Received: December 01, 2016 Accepted: January 11, 2017 Published: February 11, 2017


Caffeine, as an oocyte aging inhibitor, was used in many different species to control or delay oocyte aging. However, the safety of caffeine and developmental competence of aged oocytes inhibited by caffeine has not been studied systematically. So we detected the spindle morphology, distribution of cortical granules, zona pellucida hardening and pronucleus formation to assess oocyte quality of caffeine treated oocytes. We found that aged oocytes treated by caffeine maintained weak susceptibility to activating stimuli and regained normal competent after aged further 6 hr. Caffeine maintained the spindle morphology, changed cortical granules distribution of aged oocytes and could not prevent zona pellucida hardening. Furthermore, caffeine increased pronucleus formation of aged oocytes and decreased fragmentation after fertilization. These results suggested that caffeine could maintain the quality of aged oocytes safely in mouse.

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