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In mammals, gamete quality is not only essential for embryonic development, but may also play a key role in adult health. Oocyte maturation process includes cytoplasmic and nucleus maturation. A crucial event in oocyte cytoplasmic maturation is the accumulation of materials, such as pyruvate, mRNA, ...

In mammals, gamete quality is not only essential for embryonic development, but may also play a key role in adult health. Oocyte maturation process includes cytoplasmic and nucleus maturation. A crucial event in oocyte cytoplasmic maturation is the accumulation of materials, such as pyruvate, mRNA, mitochondrion, and so on. The important events for oocytes nucleus maturation include the division of diploid cells into haploid gametes and epigenetic reprogramming. The oocyte growth and maturation are regulated by many molecular biological processes. And these processes can be disrupted by intra- and extra-environmental factors such as maternal chronic diseases (obesity, diabetes millitus, PCOS ect.) and environmental pollutants (ZEA, BSA ect.). The lower oocyte quality may induce subfertility, infertility, abnormal embryonic development, and even adult diseases. Although spermatozoa only supply half chromatin for zygote, it is crucial for normal embryonic development and offspring health. Furthermore, environmental factors are also an essential risk factor for sperm quality. Thus, understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying germ cell development is essential for reproduction.

In mammalian development, the two windows for epigenetic reprogramming are germ cell formation and early embryo development. The reestablishment of epigenetic modifications is essential for oocyte maturation and embryonic development. Recently, it is indicated that epigenetic modifications play a key role in the inheritance of noncommunicable diseases. And epigenetic reprogramming is prone disrupted by environmental factors. Therefore, to understand how intra- and extra-environment affects epigenetic reprogramming in gametes and embryos is extremely important to develop strategies to prevent the inheritance of noncommunicable diseases.

This Research Topic aims to provide an updated knowledge on understanding the molecular mechanisms involved in game maturation and environmental factors affecting embryonic development and adult health. We welcome the submissions of Original Research, Methods, Review and Mini-Review articles that cover, but are not limited to, the following topics:
• Metabolic disorders and gametogenesis
• Effects of intra- and extra-environmental factors on epigenetics
• Intra- and extra-environment and embryonic quality
• Inheritance of noncommunicable diseases
• Strategies to prevent effects of environmental factors on reproduction
• Germ cell development and maturation

Keywords: germ cell, mitochondria, reproduction, environment, epigenetics, embryo


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