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A novel fully automated incubation, manipulation and documentation system for the avian embryogenesis

: Mohrhardt, E.; Schmitt, D.; Gorjup, E.; Howitz, S.; Zimmermann, H.; Fuhr, G.

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Journal of biotechnology & biomaterials : JBTBM 5 (2015), Nr.3, Art. 1000202, 6 S.
ISSN: 2155-952X
Zeitschriftenaufsatz, Elektronische Publikation
Fraunhofer IBMT ()
novel avian incubator; automated high quality optical documentation; online manipulation; time lapse imaging; bioreactor; recipient eggshell culture; avian embryogenesis

Scientifically the avian egg is a well-established and increasingly used animal model predominantly represented by the chicken (gallus gallus domesticus). Apart from developmental biology studies, chicken eggs are used in angiogenesis, tumor and irritation studies. For all those experimental setups a culture and incubation system is required providing excellent documentation of environmental parameters as temperature and relative humidity and optical accessibility, flexible manipulation during the complete embryonic development of the chicken (usually 21 days) and stable survival rate. Here we present an avian egg incubator with a modular lid system comprising a glass window with condensation prevention and a parallel access for manipulation. We show the influence of light exposure as well as turning speed and frequency on the embryo survival rate for optimized culture conditions. Incubator and lid system were evaluated successfully up to the hatch of normally developed chicken, while automatically documenting their embryogenesis. The new incubation system holds benefits like automated high quality documentation, online manipulation and adjustable incubation and opens up completely new applications in the field of avian embryo culture.