Scientists have created artificial sperm
Artificial sperm are usually grown from stem cells, but Chinese scientists have invented a more promising method. In the laboratory, they managed to create spermatids - male germ cells of one of the final stages of education. They are absolutely functional, but lack a swimming tail and can only fertilize an egg in vitro. Using this biomaterial, scientists received healthy offspring from several dozen female mice.
The production of artificial sperm required rigorous work from biologists. They took the embryonic cells of the male mouse and exposed them to cytokines (“information” molecules) so that they developed into the reproductive. Then the cells were placed in a growth medium similar to the male testes and exposed to testosterone.
The resulting material is fully consistent with the "gold standard" for artificial sperm, defined by a group of reproductive scientists in 2014. Its main criteria: the absence of cellular mutations at each stage of formation, the correct set of chromosomes and DNA composition.
As always, the question of the ethics of such experiments remains open. Artificial sperm does not go through all the natural stages of cell formation and it is not known how children conceived in this way will develop. In addition, spermatids are screened in the testes - the body determines which ones are best for reproduction. In the laboratory, this is not possible. Be that as it may, experiments to create artificial sperm are conducted in many countries of the world and give hope to thousands of infertile men.