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Latest Germ cells Stories

Important Step Identified In Sperm Reprogramming
2011-09-23 03:39:10

   When sperm meets egg, the chemical instructions that tag sperm cells must be erased so that human life can start anew. One way these instructions are erased is through demethylation, the removal of specific chemical tags or methyl groups that dot the underlying DNA of cells. Though scientists have known about this phenomenon for a decade, exactly how such "reprogramming" occurs has proved elusive. Now, a study from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of...

2011-08-29 12:07:09

Most cells rely on structural tethers to position chromosomes in preparation for cell division. Not so oocytes. Instead, a powerful intracellular stream pushes chromosomes far-off the center in preparation for the highly asymmetric cell division that completes oocyte maturation upon fertilization of the egg, report researchers at the Stowers Institute for Medical Research. Their findings illustrate how oocytes repurposed a dynamic cellular mechanism capable of generating considerable...

2011-08-10 06:44:15

(Ivanhoe Newswire) "“ New scientific findings are crucial for infertility research and treatment and for a more comprehensive understanding of germ cell biology in general. Researchers have now found a way to turn mouse embryonic stem cells into sperm. Investigators coaxed mouse embryonic stem cells into sperm precursors, called primordial germ cells (PGCs), and discovered that these cells were able to produce healthy sperm. The researchers say that such in vitro reconstitution of germ...

2011-08-04 14:03:25

Researchers have found a way to turn mouse embryonic stem cells into sperm. This finding, reported in the journal Cell in a special online release on August 4th, opens up new avenues for infertility research and treatment. A Kyoto University team has coaxed mouse embryonic stem cells into sperm precursors, called primordial germ cells (PGCs), and shown that these cells can give rise to healthy sperm. The researchers say that such in vitro reconstitution of germ cell development represents one...

2011-08-04 13:36:52

Research could lead to techniques to improve fertilization in humans In new research that could have implications for improving fertilization in humans and other mammals, life scientists studied interactions between individual sperm and eggs in red abalone, an ocean-dwelling snail, and made precise chemical measurements and physical models of these interactions. They are the first scientists to do so. By simulating the natural habitat of the abalone in the laboratory, the scientists were able...

2011-04-18 13:56:57

It was previously thought that land plants evolved from stonewort-like algae. However, new research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Evolutionary Biology shows that the closest relatives to land plants are actually conjugating green algae such as Spirogyra. Ancestors of green plants began to colonise the land about 500 million years ago and it is generally accepted that they evolved from streptophyte algae (a group of green, fresh water algae). But this group of algae is...

2011-04-14 21:03:08

Egg cells failing to properly arrange chromosomes Washington State University researchers have confirmed a critical step in cell division that results in age-related miscarriages and birth defects, including Down syndrome. Writing in the upcoming issue of the journal "Current Biology," the researchers say they recreated the conditions in which an egg cell will continue to undergo cell division without properly arranging its chromosomes, creating offspring with aneuploidy, or an abnormal...

2011-03-17 21:00:03

A team of researchers at the Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência (IGC), Portugal, discovered that pollen, the organ that contains the plant male gametes, communicate with the pistil, their female counterpart, using a mechanism commonly observed in the nervous system of animals. This study not only reveals a new mechanism which underlies reproduction in plants, but also opens an exciting new avenue in the study of how cell-cell communication is conserved between animals and...

2011-02-02 14:50:50

Study uncovers genetic hierarchy in plant sperm formation Biologists at the University of Leicester have published results of a new study into the intricacies of sex in flowering plants. They have found that a gene in plants, called DUO1, acts as a master switch to ensure twin fertile sperm cells are made in each pollen grain. The research identifies for the first time that DUO1 switches on a battery of genes that together govern sperm cell production and their ability to produce seeds.. The...

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2010-10-28 09:30:00

Researchers have linked a chemical compound commonly used in the making of plastics to low-sperm counts and other reproductive issues among Chinese factory workers, according to a study published in the latest edition of the journal Fertility and Sterility. The study, which was funded by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and completed at the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in Oakland, California, analyzed the urine levels of male workers in China. Those...


Word of the Day
cock-a-hoop
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'
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