Normal fertilization follows a defined course of events, although the timing of these events may vary considerably (for more details, refer to Chapter 11). Either direct deposition (ICSI) or active propulsion [conventional in vitro fertilization (IVF)] ensures presence of a spermatozoon in the cytoplasm. Its head decondenses in the ooplasm prior to the extrusion of the second polar body. The male pronucleus appears in the center of the oocyte and the female one in close proximity to the meta phase spindle at the periphery of the gamete. Microtubuli growing from the paternal centrosome organize central apposition of both pronuclei (40). This phase is accompanied by final pronuclear growth, nucleolar movement, and coalescence as well as a certain withdrawal of ooplasmic components to the perinuclear region (41).
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