Stem Cell Discovery Could Put Cloning on the Fast TrackRebecca Taylor | Washington, DC | LifeNews.com | 3/5/12 11:07 AM
Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital have announced they have found stem cells in ovaries that may be able to generate egg cells. It was previously thought that women are born with all the eggs they will ever have in a lifetime. But this research suggests that more eggs can be made by extracting these stem cells from ovaries.
The scientists first found these stem cells in mice and were able to generate mouse eggs. They then turned to ovaries donated by Japanese women undergoing a sex-change. The reproductive stem cells were isolated and coaxed to differentiate into follicles and mature eggs. From the New York Times:
The new research, by a team led by the biologist Jonathan L. Tilly, depends on a special protein found to mark the surface of reproductive cells like eggs and sperm. Using a cell-sorting machine that can separate out the marked cells, the team obtained reproductive cells from mouse ovaries and showed that the cells would generate viable egg cells that could be fertilized and produce embryos.
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