Stem cell study may help infertile women

Cells help create new eggs in mice

Stem cell injections may one day be injected into infertile women to help their ovaries create new eggs. In an article published in the journal Nature Cell Biology, researchers in China say they’ve found a way to generate new eggs using stem cells in adult mice.
The scientists sterilized a group of female mice using busulphan, a chemotherapy drug before injecting 10,000 thawed stem cells into both ovaries of each mouse. After allowing the mice to mate naturally over the course of a few months, 18 of the 22 mice that received stem cell transplants gave birth to healthy offspring. Despite the hopeful findings, researchers say the results are tentative and more studies need to be conducted. If the controversial procedure can work in humans it could lead to treatments that extend fertility in adult women by helping them grow new eggs.

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.