Hope for men left infertile by childhood cancer – Daily Mail

Hope for men left infertile by childhood cancer as revolutionary fertility transplants could boost their chances of become a father

  • Men left infertile by childhood cancer treatment could become fathers thanks to revolutionary fertility transplants
  • Scientists will seek permission in the new year to begin clinical trials of the treatment in humans for the first time
  • Cancer is affecting growing numbers of children, with cases in the UK rising by 24 per cent since the 1990s


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Men left infertile by childhood cancer treatment could become fathers thanks to revolutionary fertility transplants.

Scientists will seek permission in the new year to begin clinical trials of the treatment in humans for the first time.

Cancer is affecting growing numbers of children, with cases in the UK rising by 24 per cent since the 1990s.

Scientists believe increased pollution is partly driving the rise. 

Experts said the transplants would bring ‘real hope’ to boys who have to undergo chemotherapy and radiotherapy before puberty, which can damage their ability to make sperm in adulthood.

Since 2016, scientists in Edinburgh and Oxford have been freezing biopsies of healthy testicular tissue from children with cancer before they start treatment. 

Experts said the transplants would bring ¿real hope¿ to boys who have to undergo chemotherapy and radiotherapy before puberty, which can damage their ability to make sperm in adulthood (File image)

Experts said the transplants would bring ¿real hope¿ to boys who have to undergo chemotherapy and radiotherapy before puberty, which can damage their ability to make sperm in adulthood (File image)

Experts said the transplants would bring ‘real hope’ to boys who have to undergo chemotherapy and radiotherapy before puberty, which can damage their ability to make sperm in adulthood (File image)

If permission is granted for trials to go ahead, it will be the first time they have been able to re-implant these tissue samples back into cancer survivors (File image)

If permission is granted for trials to go ahead, it will be the first time they have been able to re-implant these tissue samples back into cancer survivors (File image)

If permission is granted for trials to go ahead, it will be the first time they have been able to re-implant these tissue samples back into cancer survivors (File image)

If permission is granted for trials to go ahead, it will be the first time they have been able to re-implant these tissue samples back into cancer survivors.

‘We are all very excited about it,’ said Professor Rod Mitchell, lead researcher of the project at the MRC Centre for Reproductive Health at the University of Edinburgh. 

His team is confident the procedure will work in humans after a trial on monkeys in the US in 2019 led to the birth of a rhesus macaque called Grady, the first primate born using the technique.

A similar treatment using ovarian tissue is already used in women who have cancer treatment before reaching puberty and later want children. 

If successful, the first UK men could receive the fertility treatment within two to three years.

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