Special Reviews

Male Germline Stem Cells: From Mice to Men

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Science  20 Apr 2007:
Vol. 316, Issue 5823, pp. 404-405
DOI: 10.1126/science.1137741

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The production of functional male gametes is dependent on the continuous activity of germline stem cells. The availability of a transplantation assay system to unequivocally identify male germline stem cells has allowed their in vitro culture, cryopreservation, and genetic modification. Moreover, the system has enabled the identification of conditions and factors involved in stem cell self-renewal, the foundation of spermatogenesis, and the production of spermatozoa. The increased knowledge about these cells is also of great potential practical value, for example, for the possible cryopreservation of stem cells from boys undergoing treatment for cancer to safeguard their germ line.

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