“Could this technique also be performed in humans to treat infertility problems without ethical problems?”
A major step has been taken in the experimental production of spermatozoids, after a Chinese team were able to produce them “in vitro” from mice (Cell Stem 18; 330-340, 2016). Although several attempts have previously been made to produce spermatozoa, researchers were only able to generate precursor cells, which had to be transplanted into animal testicles in order to produce sperm. The sperm produced with this new technique are similar to those of mice sperm. The most important finding however, was that after fertilising murine oocytes, live mice were obtained. According to the authors, this technique, could also be performed in humans to treat infertility problems (Nature Medicine 22; 337, 2016), but if this can be achieved, the bioethical problems that the use of these techniques entails would have to be very carefully evaluated.
The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.