Artificial ovary

Scientists at Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois, USA, have used a 3D printer to make a scaffold from a hydrogel. The team was then able to load this biocompatible scaffold with ovarian follicles from a female mouse and implanted it into the female. The follicles begin the maturation process within this implanted structure and released eggs, which were fertilized through natural mating. The females then went on to give birth to live young. The possibility of this technology being extended to humans with premature ovarian failure or POF induced by chemotherapy is a long way off as human follicles grow much bigger than mouse follicles, but the principle of a synthetic ovary has been established nevertheless.