We studied the effects of actinomycin D, alpha-amanitin, puromycin, and cycloheximide on the cytoplasmic activity of maturing Rana pipiens oocytes that induces chromosome condensation in transplanted brain nuclei. Treatment of oocytes with each inhibitor suppressed the chromosome condensation induced by metaphase oocytes to varying degrees depending upon the dose of inhibitor, despite the fact that untreated metaphase I oocytes already possessed chromosome condensation activity (CCA). Treatment of brain nuclei before injection completely suppressed condensation at all doses used. Chromosome condensation induced by metaphase II oocyte cytoplasm, however, was insensitive to all the inhibitors, even when the brain nuclei were pretreated. Oocytes treated with alpha-amanitin throughout maturation induced chromosome condensation when tested at metaphase II. Removal of the oocyte chromosomes after the germinal vesicle (GV) broke down did not prevent the development of CCA, whereas removal of the entire GV before initiation of maturation deprived oocytes of CCA. The results suggest that metaphase I oocyte cytoplasm stimulates synthesis of brain nuclear RNAs that are translated into proteins necessary for chromosome condensation, whereas metaphase II oocytes possess all the factors for chromosome condensation. In both cases, GV nucleoplasm appears indispensable for the development of CCA, whereas immediate activity of the oocyte genome is not required.

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