Various types of cell cycle organization occur in mammals. In this study, centrosome changes during meiosis in horse oocytes, and first cell cycle organization following fertilization, parthenogenesis and nuclear transfer, were monitored. Cumulus oocyte complexes harvested from horse ovaries obtained from slaughtered mares were cultured in vitro. Meiotic oocytes of germinal vesicle (GV), germinal vesicle breakdown (GVBD), metaphase I and II (MI and MII) stages were selected at various set times during in vitro maturation. Embryos at the first cell cycle stage were generated by subjecting MII stage oocytes to fertilization by intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), parthenogenetic treatment or nuclear transfer. Centrosome changes during meiosis and the first cell cycle organization were detected by indirect immunofluorescent staining, using a mouse anti-alpha-tubulin antibody for microtubules and a rabbit anti-gamma-tubulin antibody for centrosomes. These examinations showed that the centrosomes of the horse oocyte reorganize themselves from the beginning of GV stage to leave only PCM of gamma-tubulin surrounding both poles of the MI and MII stage spindles. These MII oocytes can organize the separation of metaphase chromosomes during the first embryonic cell cycle by parthenogenetic treatment. When the MII oocytes were subjected to ICSI or nuclear transfer, one or two red-stained centrosomes of gamma-tubulin were introduced by the fertilising spermatozoon or the donor cell which associated with the sperm chromatin in the fertilized embryos and with the donor cell chromatin and microtubules in the cloned embryos. This finding suggests that centrosomes are not an essential component in the formation of the metaphase spindle during meiotic maturation of horse oocytes, but they can be introduced from the spermatozoon or donor cell and are necessary for the organization of normal embryonic development.