Scientists Grow Mouse Sperm in Lab – What Does This Mean for Human Fertility?
Scientists have grown sperm cells in a dish from the testicular tissue of mice, the Los Angeles Times reported.A team of Japanese scientists from the Yokohama City University Graduate School of Medicine in Yokohama, Japan, were able to grow healthy sperm in a lab and use them to produce fertile offspring.
This achievement comes after decades of unsuccessful attempts to develop spermatogonial stem cells into actual sperm.
The scientists hope this breakthrough can help doctors one day design fertility treatments for men – in particular, young boys undergoing treatment for cancer.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy for cancer can potentially kill the cells that create sperm, which can leave patients infertile. While adults can bank sperm before treatment, that option isn’t available to boys who haven’t hit puberty yet.
The findings have been published in the journal Nature.