RH LRB2: Development of new methods to preserve fertility in pre-pubertal Danish and Swedish boys, who have a risk of a destroyed testis function
This study is performed Laboratory of Reproductive Biology at Rigshospitalet in collaboration with Dept. Reproduction and Growth at Malmø Hospital and Clinical Institute at Odense University Hospital.
Patients undergoing chemotherapy for malignant disease will become sterile as a direct consequence of the treatment. For adult men fertility can be restored if sperm is preserved before treatment and later used for IVF. Pre-pubertal boys do not have the same opportunity. Today no efficient method exists to preserve fertility for these patients. Approximately 100 and 150 boys in Denmark and Sweden require chemotherapy for cancers every year. 80 % of them survive to reach adult life where the wishes to have a family may occur.
This project attempts to develop a new method to preserve spermatozoa stem cells (SSC) from these boys. Testis samples either from the already existing bio bank of testis tissue or from fresh biopsies are analysed. SSC are isolated and cultured. Later the material is transferred to mice without spermatogenesis for maturation. Ten weeks later the human SSC are isolated and tested for human DNA.
One of the important issues to address before the new method can be implemented into future regimens is to avoid transferring cancer cells from the biopsies back to the patient. In this study SSC cultures will be preserved together with cancer cell lines to evaluate how cancer cells react to the preservation.
The last part of the study addresses ways of maturing SSC’s into spermatocytes, which is the last a necessary step to master before the method is fully developed.