Embryo Cryopreservation

MMRRC at UNC offers embryo cryopreservation as a highly effective way to preserve your line.   Embryo cryopreservation is recommended for lines with multiple genetic mutations or uncommon/mixed backgrounds.   We recommend storing 150-200 embryos to properly archive your line.  This can take multiple attempts.  In vitro Fertilization (IVF) and embryo cryopreservation can be highly variable between strains as well as with individual mice.

If you have a mouse line that is published, please visit www.mmrrc.org to apply for strain submission to our public repository.  If accepted, there will be no fee for services.  However, we will publish the strain as being available to the research community and we will take responsibility for distributing the strain to those requesting it.

It is our policy, as well as NIH’s, that all published strains should be deposited in the public repository for research community use.  For strains made by investigators from other institutions but imported into UNC, we suggest that you to contact the originating investigator to encourage them to submit the strain to the public archive.  If for any reason this is not possible, we will consider archiving the strain for you in the UNC private archive.

What we need:

  • At least 2 males, 10-24 weeks of age.  The mice must be housed separately for at least 1 week before transferring them to our facility.
  • At least 10 females, 7-12 weeks of age.

 

What you get:

  • MMRRC will perform an IVF within 2 weeks of receiving the animals.  All resulting embryos will be cryopreserved.
  • All embryos will be cryopreserved at the 4-cell stage in 0.25cc Cassou French Insemination Straws (at least 25 embryos/straw).
  • QC thaw and culture to blastocyst stage.
  • Storage options
  • QC to live pups option

 

Sample Storage Options

All samples are preserved in Cassou insemination straws and must be stored directly in liquid nitrogen or in liquid nitrogen vapor.  Samples cannot be stored in any other type of freezer.

  • MMRRC Storage: We offer to store your samples in our permanent archive.  If choosing storage at the MMRRC facility, there is a $200/year storage fee.  This fee is pro-rated for the first year and invoiced at the time of cryopreservation.
  • Self-Storage/Investigator Lab: If choosing self-storage, straws will be held at the MMRRC facility until a QC in-vitro fertilization (IVF) is performed.  Investigators are responsible for collecting their sample within 30 days of the date of QC, otherwise the sample will automatically be stored with the MMRRC and the investigating lab’s grant will be billed.  If you leave the University without notifying us, we have the right to dispose of your samples.

 

QC to live pups option

For an additional $1000, MMRRC at UNC performs a small IVF with QC straw of sperm to access quality of the sample.  The fertilization rate is recorded and embryos produced are transferred to a pseudo-pregnant mouse.  The MMRRC at UNC cannot guarantee this will result in live pups.  If pups are born, the surrogate will be health tested after pups are weaned.  Due to the strict health standards of our colony, every surrogate that births must be sent to Charles River Laboratory for full health testing.   The cost of health testing is included.  It will take approximately 16 weeks until mice are ready to be transferred to your colony.   If genotype verification is needed, we can tail snip the resulting pups at 10 days old.  The tail snips will then be available for pick up by the investigator’s lab.

 

Pricing

Service

Storage

QC Type

Total Cost

(per attempt)

Embryo Cryo

$1200

Self Storage

No charge

QC Thaw/Culture

No charge

$1200

Embryo Cryo

$1200

Self Storage

No charge

QC to live pups

Additional $1000

$2200

Embryo Cryo

$1200

MMRRC storage*

Additional $200

QC Thaw/Culture

No charge

$1400

Embryo Cryo

$1200

MMRRC storage*

Additional $200

QC to live pups

Additional $1000

$2400

* 1st year of storage is pro-rated.

 

Disclaimer

It is recommended that 2 males (10-24 weeks of age) and at least 10 females (7-12 weeks of age) be submitted for embryo cryopreservation.  Males need to be housed separately at least 7 days before transfer to our facility.  An IVF will be done within 2 weeks of receiving the animals, and the resulting embryos will be cryopreserved.  The MMRRC at UNC recommends that 150-200 embryos be cryopreserved for the proper archival of the strain.   This can take multiple attempts.  IVF success is highly variable and depends on the number of female mice, the quality of the sperm and the fertilization rate. Please inform the MMRRC at UNC of any unusual phenotypes or breeding behaviors.  These can have a significant impact on the IVF and embryo cryopreservation success rates.

The MMRRC at UNC cannot make any guarantees that this procedure will be successful. If the first attempt is unsuccessful, the MMRRC at UNC can repeat the procedure for $900.  In vitro Fertilization (IVF) and embryo cryopreservation can be highly variable between strains as well as with individual mice.  The MMRRC at UNC will perform a quality control thaw by thawing a designated QC straw and culturing the embryos to blastocyst stage.