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Cells 2019, 8(2), 93; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells8020093

Implications and Current Limitations of Oogenesis from Female Germline or Oogonial Stem Cells in Adult Mammalian Ovaries

Laboratory of Aging and Infertility Research, Department of Biology, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115, USA
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Received: 29 November 2018 / Accepted: 16 January 2019 / Published: 28 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Female Germline Stem Cells)
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Abstract

A now large body of evidence supports the existence of mitotically active germ cells in postnatal ovaries of diverse mammalian species, including humans. This opens the possibility that adult stem cells naturally committed to a germline fate could be leveraged for the production of female gametes outside of the body. The functional properties of these cells, referred to as female germline or oogonial stem cells (OSCs), in ovaries of women have recently been tested in various ways, including a very recent investigation of the differentiation capacity of human OSCs at a single cell level. The exciting insights gained from these experiments, coupled with other data derived from intraovarian transplantation and genetic tracing analyses in animal models that have established the capacity of OSCs to generate healthy eggs, embryos and offspring, should drive constructive discussions in this relatively new field to further exploring the value of these cells to the study, and potential management, of human female fertility. Here, we provide a brief history of the discovery and characterization of OSCs in mammals, as well as of the in-vivo significance of postnatal oogenesis to adult ovarian function. We then highlight several key observations made recently on the biology of OSCs, and integrate this information into a broader discussion of the potential value and limitations of these adult stem cells to achieving a greater understanding of human female gametogenesis in vivo and in vitro. View Full-Text
Keywords: oogenesis; oocyte; germ cell; germline stem cell; oogonial stem cell; meiosis; ovary; fertility oogenesis; oocyte; germ cell; germline stem cell; oogonial stem cell; meiosis; ovary; fertility
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Martin, J.J.; Woods, D.C.; Tilly, J.L. Implications and Current Limitations of Oogenesis from Female Germline or Oogonial Stem Cells in Adult Mammalian Ovaries. Cells 2019, 8, 93.

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