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Science Alert: Experts Respond

Low sperm count following ICSI conception – Expert reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on October 6th, 2016.

A new study of men who were conceived in the 1990s using a now common fertility treatment has found they have lower-than-average fertility – suggesting the treatment passed the fathers’ fertility issues onto the sons. The 54 young men, now aged 18-22, were conceived using intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) – a method used for men […]

UPDATED: World’s first ‘three-parent’ baby – Expert Reaction

Sarah-Jane O'Connor posted in on September 28th, 2016.

News broke overnight that a baby born in April was the result of a new technique using DNA from three people. The Jordanian parents contacted researchers at New York’s New Hope Fertility Center after discovering the mother had a rare mitochondrial disease – Leigh syndrome – which she had passed on to two children, both […]

Embryo research hits ethical barrier – Expert Reaction

John Kerr posted in on May 5th, 2016.

Scientists have broken through a technical barrier in human embryo research and now face an ethical one. Two separate studies published in Nature and Nature Cell Biology today report on new methods allowing human embryos to cultured and studied in Petri dishes for as long as 13 days. Previous studies have struggled to keep embryos […]

Sperm derived from stem cells – Experts reaction

John Kerr posted in on February 26th, 2016.

Scientists in China have created functioning sperm from mice stem cells in the laboratory. To accomplish this feat, the researchers coaxed mouse embryonic stem cells to turn into functional sperm-like cells, which were then injected into egg cells to produce fertile mouse offspring. The research, published in Cell Stem Cell, provides a platform for generating […]

Human embryo gene editing gets UK go-ahead – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on February 2nd, 2016.

A regulatory body in the UK  has approved the first research application to use new ‘gene editing’ techniques on human embryos. The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority is the UK’s independent regulator overseeing the use of gametes and embryos in fertility treatment and research. The Authority has today approved a proposal for new research, led by […]

Sperm banking for young men – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on June 26th, 2015.

A bioethicist’s call for young men to freeze their sperm for future use has received a chilly reception from independent experts. Writing in the Journal of Medical Ethics, Dr Kevin Smith, from Abertay University in Dundee, suggested state-sponsored sperm-banking as way of avoiding the complications of older fatherhood. Younger men could freeze their healthier sperm […]

Time-lapse images of embryos used to boost IVF success

Dacia Herbulock posted in on May 17th, 2013.

New research describes a breakthrough in IVF technology that proponents claim will significantly increase live birth rates in fertility clinics. The technique uses precision time-lapse imaging to more accurately distinguish developing embryos with normal and abnormal numbers of chromosomes. The study found that embryos with too many or too few chromosomes typically reach specific growth […]

IVF pioneer Sir Bob Edwards dies, age 87

John Kerr posted in on April 11th, 2013.

Robert Edwards, a pioneering fertility scientist whose ground breaking research lead to the success of in-vitro fertilisation, died Wednesday at age 87. Prof Sir Robert (Bob) Edwards, working with Dr Patrick Steptoe, is credited with the development of in vitro fertilization, or IVF, which resulted in the birth in 1978 of the world’s first ‘test […]

Fertile mouse eggs created from stem cells – experts respond

John Kerr posted in on October 5th, 2012.

Japanese researchers have turned mouse stem cells into germ cells that give rise to eggs in living mice, which then produced viable offspring via in vitro fertilisation. This research, which mirrors work already done with sperm, may open the door to new insights into female germ cells and provide new leads for treating some forms […]

Kiwi scientists find fertility ‘switch’

Peter Griffin posted in on September 3rd, 2008.

A team at the University of Otago have shown how a key molecule in the brain controls ovulation. The molecule, called kisspeptin, starts a cascade of brain and hormonal responses that eventually lead to the ovaries releasing eggs. The scientists say their findings could lead to new, targeted treatments for infertility, including drugs that can […]

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