Egg cells from Stell Cells: A breakthrough in fertility research | Bionic …

Its one of the basic truths about biology were all thought in high school: while men can produce a nearly infinite amount of sperm cells throughout their lifetime, women are born with a set number of egg cells and once they run out, well then thats that. Recent research by Jonathan Tilly of the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston however, has suggested that egg cells can develop from a certain kind of egg-producing stem cells in mice.

Apart from rustling the fundaments of developmental biology, this discovery may also have very useful application in fertility treatments for women. Kutluk Oktay, reproductive biologist at the New York Medical College in Valhalla, compares these findings with discovering a planet in our solar system with a bacterium on it.

Like with many breakthroughs in science, it was not the original goal of the researches to overturn an established dogma. They just found something that didnt seem to stroke with the general consensus and decided to investigate further.

As mentioned before, the presence of egg producing stem cells was only proven in mice at first, and not a lot of people believed that the same kind of cells were also present in humans. Jonathan Tilly however, has shown that some stem cells are present in the ovaries of women, but it still remains to be seen if these stem cells can actually develop in fully functional reproductive cells. Tully remains positive however, that he can somehow control the biological clock.

Full article from Nature Medicine

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Egg cells from Stell Cells: A breakthrough in fertility research | Bionic ...

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