Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Fun Fact: Women May Produce Eggs from Ovarian Stem Cells Throughout Their Life

It was previously thought that mammalian females were born with all of their eggs or oocytes, and that once they were gone menopause would begin. New research however has waylaid that dogmatic thought. What seems to be ovarian stem cells, which have been termed oogonial stem cells (OSCs), have been discovered in the ovaries of Japanese women. Found in only 1 out of 10,000 ovarian cells, these OSCs grew quickly in the laboratory and under certain circumstances resembled oocytes and immature follicles. Though the OSCs may theoretically be able to mature to fertile oocytes, it is thought to be highly doubtful because growing cell cultures readily amass harmful mutations.

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