A medical breakthrough means boys who undergo fertility-destroying cancer treatment could still have children of their own later in life.
Scientists have frozen testicular tissue from monkeys too young to produce sperm before successfully using it to produce a pregnancy leading to healthy offspring.
More than 80 per cent of children with cancer will survive – but 30 per cent of survivors will be infertile as adults.
Researchers say the method, called cryopreservation, is an early step in the effort to maintain the fertility of childhood cancer patients.
The scientists removed and froze testicular tissue from five rhesus macaques too young to produce sperm.
When the animals approached puberty, the researchers thawed the tissue samples and implanted them, along with a comparison set of fresh, unfrozen samples, back into the animals they came from.
A few months later, they removed the tissue implants and found that both the fresh and frozen tissue had produced sperm.
The researchers then isolated sperm from the previously frozen implants and used it to fertilise 138 eggs – of these, 41 per cent developed into early-stage embryos.
The researchers then transferred 11 embryos into female macaques, resulting in one pregnancy and subsequent live birth.
Lead researcher Professor Kyle Orwig, of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in the US, said: “The gold-standard proof of concept for any reproductive technology is the production of functional gametes and live offspring.
“In this study, we demonstrated that frozen and thawed prepubertal testicular tissue could be matured in vivo by grafting under the back skin or scrotal skin of the same animal to produce functional sperm and a healthy baby.
“One caveat to our study is that testicular tissues were grafted into castrated animals, which would not usually be the case with prepubertal cancer survivors.
“We castrated animals in this study because that is the only condition that produced sperm in previous nonhuman primate autologous testicular tissue grafting studies.
“Future studies are needed to confirm that graft development proceeds in a similar fashion in the scrotum or under the skin of individuals with intact testes.”
Prof Orwig said cryopreservation would not likely be appropriate for childhood leukaemia, lymphoma, or testicular cancer survivors in case cancerous cells were reintroduced to the survivor.
But it could be used for young patients with cancerous tumours or bone marrow, for example.
He said: “A second caveat is that testicular tissues collected before cancer treatment might harbour malignant cells.
“Therefore, the autologous grafting approach may not be appropriate for childhood leukaemia, lymphoma, or testicular cancer survivors.
“On the other hand, autologous testicular tissue grafting could be appropriate for patients receiving bone marrow transplants for nonmalignant conditions or patients with solid tumors, including sarcomas and neuroblastomas that do not metastasise to the testes.”
SEE ALSO :5 natural ways to boost fertility
The research team said although the study is small, it helps establish the concept of using immature testicular tissue to preserve fertility.
Prof Orwig added: “Human tissue studies as well as studies addressing the caveats outlined above are needed to understand the scope, safety, and feasibility of testicular tissue grafting in patients. ”
The findings were published in the journal Science.
Zari Hassan taunts fans by sharing intimate bedroom photo with King Bae ▷ Kenya News
– Zari did not reveal the man’s face but fans concluded it was her King Bae
– She shared a photo showing off her hand resting on top of the man’s well-toned chest
– Quite a number of people who saw the photo believe her King Bae is her South African manager Galston
The mother of five on Thursday, December 12, posted a photo of her hand resting on top of a man’s chest.
Judging by the photo, which she shared on her Instagram status update, it is clear the two had just finished twa twa and were resting or vice versa.
The intimate bedroom photo came at a time when the socialite had taken a break from posting a series of King Bae’s photos.
As usual, Zari did not reveal her man’s face in a move that kept her fans guessing, with many insinuating King Bae could be her South African manager Galston.
While some people through their different social media accounts gushed over the two for serving relationship goals, others thought Zari should not share such images owing to her advanced age.
It is important to note that this was not the first time Zari teased her social media fans with photos of her mystery man.
The socialite moved on to the next one with her King Bae after many months of staying single following her breakup with Diamond.
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Behind the scenes during Sonko’s in court | Tuko TV.
Treasury Releases Funds to Counties Showing Acceptable Plans to Clear Pending Bills
A statement from the National Treasury shows that 18 counties that showed acceptable plans to clear pending bills received reimbursements for November.
Acting Treasury CS, Ukur Yattani, says that the 18 counties received Ksh. 11 billion.
The counties include; Baringo, Bomet, Embu, Garissa, Isiolo, Kiambu, Kirinyaga, Kitui, Machakos, Meru, Migori, Mombasa, Nandi, Narok, Taita Taveta, Tana, Tharaka Nithi, Vihiga.
A further Ksh.7 billion was disbursed to 12 counties that had cleared their pending bills. These include; Elgeyo Marakwet, Homabay, Kajiado, Kericho, Kilifi, Kwale, Laikipia, Makueni, Nyamira, Nyandarua, Nyeri, Uasin Gishu.
Kenyan to Steer Dalberg as Global Managing Partner
Dalberg Advisors has announced the appointment of Edwin Macharia as Global Managing Partner for a 3-year term. Edwin term commences on 1 January 2020 and succeeds Yana Kakar who had been at the helm since 2013.
Prior to his appointment, Edwin has been with Dalberg for 11 years serving various roles. For instance, he founded Dalberg’s first office in East Africa in 2008, established Agriculture and Food Security Practice, and serves two terms as the Regional Director for Africa.
“Edwin has spearheaded a lot of innovation into the new business lines within the Group. That will serve him well as he steps forward to lead Dalberg’s biggest and longest-standing business” noted Henrik Skovby, Dalberg’s Founder.
Dalberg Advisors is a global consulting firm specializing in inclusive and sustainable business, policy, and investment strategy. Moreover, the firm combines strategy consulting, design thinking, big data analytics, and research to address complex social and environmental challenges.
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