Frozen Rat Ovaries and Fertility

Ovary Experiment Gives Hope on Cancer, Transplants

[01/23/2002; Reuters Health]

LONDON (Reuters)

A successful experiment freezing the ovaries of rats could offer new hope to cancer patients who fear treatment could make them infertile and to those waiting for transplants of hard-to-store organs.

Researchers from Canada's McGill University and the University of Washington in the United States said on Wednesday they had restored fertility to laboratory rats after transplanting stored ovaries. A majority of the seven rats in the test regained their fertility and one became pregnant.

It is thought to be the first time previously frozen organs have been successfully transplanted in animals or humans. Dr. Roger Gosden, who conducted the research in Montreal, said the technique could be used to preserve the fertility of women undergoing chemotherapy, which can damage the ovaries and cause premature menopause.

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