This work compares the ability of rat zygotes fertilized in vitro or in vivo to develop into viable embryos. All oocytes were from adult cyclic females. After the first cleavage, the zygotes were transferred to oviducts of pseudopregnant recipients. Their fate was examined on day 13 at laparotomy and again on day 20. Ninety‐five of 146 in vivo fertilized zygotes developed into normal sized 13‐day fetuses and 72 (55%) to apparently normal near‐term fetuses. Forty‐six of 135 in vitro fertilized zygotes developed up to day 13, and 30 (24%) developed to term. It appears that the probability that in vitro fertilized rat zygotes will develop into viable embryos is about half the chance of in vivo fertilized zygotes. Since the two types of zygotes were morphologically identical, the morphological appearance of the two‐cell stage is not an adequate criterion for judging developmental potential.
- in vitro
- in vivo