Whole embryo culture and the study of postimplantation mammalian development

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In the past decade, striking advances have been made in the field of gene introducing/disrupting technology including generation of transgenic and knockout mice, which have enabled us to elucidate roles of specific genes in development. In this technology, embryos introduced with exogenous genes or chimeric embryos aggregated/injected with embryonic stem (ES) cells carrying targeted genes are allowed to develop in the uterus of foster mothers. The uterus, however, is like a black box for researchers investigating postimplantation development of mammalian embryos. Embryo culture is one of the powerful techniques that can open this black box. In this review, we focus on the applicable aspects of the whole embryo culture in the study of mammalian development and discuss the future possibilities of this technique.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-132
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopment Growth and Differentiation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1995 Apr


  • cell lineage
  • mammalian development
  • organogenesis
  • whole embryo culture


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