My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Kyushu University in Fukuoka researchers create Artificial Mice Eggs from Skin Cells

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Kyushu University in Fukuoka researchers create Artificial Mice Eggs from Skin Cells

“This is truly amazing. To be able to make robust and functional mouse oocytes over and over again entirely in a dish, and see the entire process without the 'black box' of having to do any of the steps in host animals, is most exciting.”

Dr. Jacob Hanna, a stem cell biologist at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel.

Cloning humans may be coming sooner than you think. In fact, you might not even need ova and sperm from humans.

Researchers from Kyushu University in Japan have developed a technique to create artificial ova from stem cells as reported in the article “Scientists Create Fully Functional Eggs from Skin Cells”, published September 17 2016 by George Dvorsky, Gizmodo.

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Their research, published in the journal Nature on the 17th of October 2016, marks the first creation of eggs entirely outside a mouse. If the process is replicated using humans, researchers could produce artificial eggs without the need for human ovaries to complete the process as noted in the article “Mouse eggs made from skin cells in a dish”, published 17 October 2016 by David Cyranoski, Nature.

The team consists of the following scientists:

1.      Dr. Yayoi Obata, from Tokyo University of Agriculture
2.      Dr Katsuhiko Hayashi, from Kyushu University in Fukuoka
3.      Dr. Mitinori Saitou of the Kyoto University

The team, led by Dr Katsuhiko Hayashi, a reproductive biologist at Kyushu University in Fukuoka, had finally completed the cycle of research from skin cells to mice eggs. The original research work began when Dr Katsuhiko Hayashi and stem-cell biologist Mitinori Saitou reprogrammed skin cells to embryonic-like pluripotent stem cells and then into PGCs (primordial germ cells).

PGC need to go into ovaries to become mature eggs, so this was half of the process. The next advance came when a team in July 2016 led by Yayoi Obata, at the Tokyo University of Agriculture, transformed PGCs extracted from mouse fetuses into oocytes (egg cells) without using a live mammal. 

The three (3) soon teamed up and completed the work. They did this by immersing the PGCs in a complex chemical bath that converted the PGC's into immature egg cells. They then added tissue taken from the ovaries of mouse fetuses, causing the immature egg cells to mature into functional oocytes.

These eggs were then fertilized using mice sperm in vitro and transplanted into surrogate mice.  The results speak for themselves: twenty six (26) healthy pups born from functional eggs created in a petri dish.

Good to note that this process isn't 100% perfect; only 3.5% of artificial eggs gave rise to pups, compared with 60% of eggs inside a mouse. Hayashi claims that these mice went on to have more children of their own.

Researchers create Artificial Mice Eggs - Human reproduction and Immortality possible without a woman's eggs 

The implications for humans are staggering.

If the process can be ported to human eggs, not only would it be an excellent way to treat human infertility, but it would allow same-sex couples to have children via a surrogate.

It would also mean that women wouldn’t have to store their eggs or men store their sperm; any cells from their body could be reprogrammed to become stem cells and then be used to produce humans eggs to produce children as noted in “Japanese Scientists Master Egg-Creation Process in Mice”, published Oct. 17, 2016 by Robet Lee Holtz, The Wall Street Journal.

Combined with  CRISPR-Cas9 research fund by the Government of the Netherlands as detailed in my blog article entitled “Netherland's Plan to create Artificial Wombs, improve invitro-fertilization and eradicate Genetic Diseases”, this could create a whole new race of near perfect humans, cloned from the skin cells of deceased humans using artificial wombs.

It would also be a great way to spread human kind across the cosmos as pointed out in my blog article entitled “Claudius Gros of Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany Genesis Project may be Plan B for Earth 2.0”. 

The researchers figure it’ll take them another five to ten years to sort out the outstanding technical issues. So immortality is coming to a clinic near you.

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