Groundbreaking research on stem cells recently provided some hope for male individuals struggling with infertility as scientists succeeded in developing functional sperm cells taken from the stem cells of monkeys.

Brinkwire report said the University of Georgia scientists could produce useful sperm cells from embryonic stem cells of monkey species, particularly the rhesus macaque monkeys, igniting new hope for male infertility.

Researchers at the University of Georgia developed the embryonic cells in a dish using stem cells collected from the said mountain species to produce the so-called round spermatids, immature sperm cells.

As a result, they validated that such spermatids could fertilize a rhesus macaque egg, also igniting new hope for human trials.

ALSO READ: Sperm Memory Helps in Embryotic Transfer of Non-DNA Coded Traits

Science Times - Male Infertility Could Be Treated With Monkey Cells; New Study Shows How These Animals Could Help Address the Condition
(Photo: Md. Tareq Aziz Touhid on Wikimedia Commons)
Rhesus Macaque monkey

'Viable' Sperm Cells

In a Daily Star report, Charles Easley, the lead researcher, said this new approach is a breakthrough towards generating stem cell-based treatments to cure male infertility in circumstances where the men are not producing "any viable sperm cells."

He added this is the initial step that exhibits this technology is possibly translatable. 

They are using a species that's more significant to them, and they are having success in developing healthy embryos.

 "This is the first step that shows this technology is potentially translatable. We're using a species that's more relevant to us, and we're having success in making healthy embryos."

Nevertheless, rhesus macaques are found to have a closer match to the reproductive system of humans, so much so, the researchers added these monkeys are a "perfect and essential" model for the exploration of cell-based treatments for male infertility.

Fertilization to Take Place in 'Vitrospermatids'

Nevertheless, for fertilization to occur in vitrospermatids, several factors are coming into play, including activating the egg to guarantee that the fertilized egg is developing into a healthy embryo.

Now that the research team has successfully achieved this, the researchers are planning to implant the embryos into a replacement rhesus macaque, ScienceDaily reported.

The next step will contribute to the assessment of if the embryos can indeed generate a healthy baby or not.

This news comes a few months following the prediction of experts that most couples will necessitate medical support to conceive by the year 2045, as chemicals crash human health.

Sperm Counts Halved in the Last 4 Decades

According to a separate Daily Star report, experts have forecasted that most couples will require medical support to conceive by, as mentioned, 2045.

Environmental medicine and public health professor Shanna Swan from Mount Sinai school of medicine in New York City said she had spent years examining the patterns of chemical impacts on the human body.

In 2017, the professor documented how average sperm counts among western males have more than halved in the last four decades.

According to Swan, in following that curve from the 2017 sperm-decline meta-analysis, it forecasts that by the mid-2040s, they will have "a median sperm count of zero."

Lastly, the hormone expert forecasted that most couples would need to resort to medication or IVF to assist with conceiving, saying they have observed growth in infertility among the younger generations.

Related information about male infertility is shown on Michigan Medicine's YouTube video below:


RELATED ARTICLE: Male Fertility: Increased Chemical Exposure, Lifestyle Changes Cause Sperm Quality in the US to Decline

Check out more news and information on Medicine & Health in Science Times.