An Artificial Ovary
September 29, 2010 3:48 PM Subscribe
Using a 3-D petri dish, Researchers at Brown University and Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island have built a completely functional artificial human ovary that will allow doctors to harvest immature human egg cells (oocytes) and grow them into mature, ready-to-be-fertilized human eggs outside the body. (In vitro) The advance could eventually help preserve fertility for women facing chemotherapy or other medical treatments that may be destructive to ovarian folliculogenesis. Press Release. Article link. (paywall)
"The Brown researchers' innovation was using a honeycomb-shaped mold to support the egg. Human eggs are too large to be grown without some kind of support structure. "If you try to grow it by itself, in a dish, it basically collapses on itself," says [Stephan] Krotz, now a reproductive endocrinologist and fertility specialist at the Advanced Fertility Center of Texas."In other, somewhat related news, researchers in Cairo announced that they've been able to restore ovarian function to rats using embryonic rat mesenchymal stem cells.
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