Scientists from the United Kingdom and the United States have revealed that they were able to grow human eggs in a laboratory setting. This is all a part a new, first-of-its-kind study which could one day help women who have trouble conceiving.
According to CNN, the eggs came from the early stages of ovarian tissues. They were then brought to a mature stage where they were ready to be fertilized. While this is a significant breakthrough, there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done. Many of the eggs that were developed had abnormalities.
CNN spoke with David Albertini, co-author of the study and the director of the Division of Laboratories at the Center for Human Reproduction. He says that more work needs to be done before these eggs can help women who are struggling with infertility. This could ultimately help people with fast medical issues such as cancer. Cancer can compromise a woman’s ability to get pregnant, so something like this would be extremely useful. One out of every eight couples has trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy.
“It was pretty amazing that we got any eggs out of this at the end of the day, and what that tells us as scientists is that we’re beginning to understand exactly what are the limitations,” said Albertini.
Not only is this remarkable for women, The Guardian says that it can also help scientists understand how human eggs actually develop. The Guardian even suggests that this could be great for girls who have not gone through puberty yet.
Until now, the eggs had only grown from a late stage of development. Along with that, mostly mouse eggs were grown at the early stages. Scientists say that if this technology were found to be reliable, women who have problems with infertility would no longer have to take any fertility drugs.
Until more studies, trials, and errors are done with this new technology; it will not be released to the public. There is so much more work that needs to be done to make sure that it is a safe and consistent product. For now, we can all just step back and take a look at this remarkable scientific achievement.