Human Sperm Coaxed From Stem Cells a Scientific First

July 8, 2009

(ChattahBox)—Researchers from England have pioneered a method to create live, viable sperm from embryonic stem cells that is a first in science, which could pave the way for further advances in treating male infertility.

A team of researchers from the Newcastle University and the NorthEast England Stem Cell Institute, developed the new science of coaxing sperm using stem cell lines obtained from human embryos donated following IVF. The researchers separated the stem cells into those having male XY chromosomes and female XX chromosomes.

The stem cells with XY chromosomes were developed into germline stem cells and put through a process of cell division, called meiosis that divided the chromosomes in half. This process successfully created fully mature sperm called, In Vitro Derived sperm or IVD.

However, the XX chromosome stem cells put through the same process were only able to develop early stage sperm called, spermatagonia and went no further. The scientists concluded that the genes on a Y chromosome are necessary for meiosis and sperm maturation.

The researchers plan to use this new breakthrough to study ways to better understand and treat male infertility, with the hope that their research could lead to fertility treatments allowing infertile couples to have a child that is genetically their own. Their research could also lead to advances in genetic research and treatment for toxin induced infertility.

The British researchers do not plan to use the new technology to fertilize eggs with the IVD sperm, resulting in “producing human life in a dish,” which is prohibited under UK law. The researchers are interested in utilizing the new methodology to pursue the study of male infertility.

The entire study is available in the new edition of the journal Stem Cells and Development.

Update: The journal, Stem Cells and Development, said today, July 31, 2009 they have retracted the paper associated with this post, because a section of the article was plagiarized.

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Comments

One Response to “Human Sperm Coaxed From Stem Cells a Scientific First”

  1. Human sperm on July 27th, 2009 3:05 am

    It has been proved that human sperms can be produced from stem cells. Stem cells have the ability to transform into any cell in the body. It would be effective treatments for male infertility.

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