RSCNJ is ‘at the top of their game’

Our patient Katherine says:

“My experience at RSC has been wonderful! Dr. Ziegler, Dr. Martinez, the nurses, and the rest of the staff are highly skilled and at the top of their game. Most importantly, they are the kindest, most considerate medical practice that I have ever worked with. They provided straightforward answers to my questions, calmed my fears, and helped me feel a lot less anxious about what my husband and I were going through. I can’t recommend RSC enough!”

We thank Katherine for her kind review of our care. You can read more like her’s at our web site.

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Lab-grown sperm could let infertile men have children

Infertility affects one in seven men of reproductive age worldwide. One idea for treating male sterility is spermatogonial stem cell (SSC) therapy. In this approach, sperm stem cells in the testis are transferred to a test tube, cultured and nudged into becoming fully fledged sperm.

However, a key bottleneck has been identifying just the right conditions to get human SSCs to grow in the lab. Researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine have now developed a reliable method for culturing cells with the characteristics of human SSCs. Their work is published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.

“We think our approach–which is backed up by several techniques, including single-cell RNA-sequencing analysis–is a significant step toward bringing SSC therapy into the clinic,” said senior author Miles Wilkinson, PhD, Distinguished Professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences at UC San Diego School of Medicine.

The Wilkinson team used its single-cell RNA sequencing information to purify what it thought might be human SSCs. Using a method called germ-cell transplantation, it showed that the cells it purified were indeed highly enriched in human SSCs. The team then gathered the profile of genes expressed in these human SSCs to make guesses as to the conditions that might best support their growth in the lab. Using more than 30 human testis biopsies, the researchers determined just the right conditions needed to culture immature germ cells with the characteristics of SSCs.

With that approach, the researchers were able to favor the culture of human cells with the molecular characteristics of SSCs for two-to-four weeks. “Next, our main goal is to learn how to maintain and expand human SSCs longer so they might be clinically useful,” Wilkinson said.

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Rate of genetic mutations could help predict fertility

Differences in the rate that genetic mutations accumulate in healthy young adults could help predict remaining lifespan in both sexes and the remaining years of fertility in women, according to University of Utah Health scientists. Their study, believed to be the first of its kind, found that young adults who acquired fewer mutations over time lived about five years longer than those who acquired them more rapidly.

The researchers say the discovery could eventually lead to the development of interventions to slow the aging process.

“If the results from this small study are validated by other independent research, it would have tremendous implications,” says Lynn B. Jorde, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Human Genetics at U of U Health and a co-author of the study. “It would mean that we could possibly find ways to fix ourselves and live longer and better lives.”

The study appears online in the journal Scientific Reports.

Women with the highest mutation rates had significantly fewer live births than other women and were more likely to be younger when they gave birth to their last child. This suggests that the high rate of mutation was affecting their fertility.

“The ability to determine when aging starts, how long women can stay fertile, and how long people can live is an exciting possibility,”  said lead author Dr. Richard Cawthon, a U of U Health research associate professor of human genetics. “If we can get to a point where we better understand what sort of developmental biology affecting mutation rates is happening during puberty, then we should be able to develop medical interventions to restore DNA repair and other homeostatic mechanisms back to what they were before puberty. If we could do that, it’s possible people could live and stay healthy much longer.”

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A ‘wonderful’ experience

Our patient Katharine had this to say about her treatment at RSCNJ:

“My experience at RSC has been wonderful! Dr. Ziegler, Dr. Martinez, the nurses, and the rest of the staff are highly skilled and at the top of their game. Most importantly, they are the kindest, most considerate medical practice that I have ever worked with. They provided straightforward answers to my questions, calmed my fears, and helped me feel a lot less anxious about what my husband and I were going through. I can’t recommend RSC enough!”

Thank you so much for your kind words, Katherine. We really appreciate you taking the time out to share your experience with us. There are more shared experiences to read on our web site.

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How sperm really swim: New research challenges centuries-old assumption

A breakthrough in fertility science by researchers from England and Mexico has shattered the universally accepted view of how sperm “swim.”

More than three hundred years after Antonie van Leeuwenhoek used one of the earliest microscopes to describe human sperm as having a “tail, which, when swimming, lashes with a snakelike movement, like eels in water,” scientists have revealed this is an optical illusion.

Using state-of-the-art 3D microscopy and mathematics, Dr. Hermes Gadelha from the University of Bristol, Dr. Gabriel Corkidi and Dr. Alberto Darszon from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, have pioneered the reconstruction of the true movement of the sperm tail in 3D. The ground-breaking study, published in the journal Science Advances, reveals the sperm tail is in fact wonky and only wiggles on one side. While this should mean the sperm’s one-sided stroke would have it swimming in circles, sperm have found a clever way to adapt and swim forwards.

“Human sperm figured out if they roll as they swim, much like playful otters corkscrewing through water, their one-sided stoke would average itself out, and they would swim forwards,” said Gadelha, head of the Polymaths Laboratory at Bristol’s Department of Engineering Mathematics and an expert in the mathematics of fertility.

“With over half of infertility caused by male factors, understanding the human sperm tail is fundamental to developing future diagnostic tools to identify unhealthy sperm,” adds Gadelha. “This discovery will revolutionize our understanding of sperm motility and its impact on natural fertilization. So little is known about the intricate environment inside the female reproductive tract and how sperm swimming impinge on fertilization. These new tools open our eyes to the amazing capabilities sperm have,” said Darszon.

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Article describes ‘The Hidden Costs Of Starting A Family When Queer’

The website Refinery29 recently published this interesting article on the child-bearing difficulties faced by LGBTQIA+ individuals and couples. You can read it here.

At RSCNJ, we take pride in our dedication to serving the LGBTQIA+ community. For more information, go to our LGBTQIA+ Community Family Building web page.

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Praise for Dr. Martinez and RSCNJ staff

A patient of ours had kind words about her treatment at RSCNJ:

“Dr. Martinez is fantastic. He takes the time to answer questions thoroughly and in a way that you can understand. He is warm and caring with what can be a very stressful and emotional situation. His staff are all wonderful as well.”

We thank her, and everyone who posts reviews of our care and service. You can read more like this one on our web site.

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Researchers are developing a better understanding of PCOS

Dr. Andrea Dunaif, System Chief, Division of Endocrinology at Mount Sinai Health System, recently spoke to News-Medical.net about their genetic analysis study, which suggests there are different subtypes of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and the impacts that this could have on determining the causes of PCOS and developing more effective treatments.

“I think this type of research represents a new direction in medicine in which diseases are beginning to be classified based on scientific information rather than on expert opinion,” she says. “Gene discovery is now a major way to develop new disease therapies because it tells us about what pathways are important so we can develop drugs to target that pathway.”

You can read this interesting interview here.

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Dr. Ziegler collaborates on study published in prestigious medical journal

Dr. William Ziegler and Radhika Hombale-Gowda, a fourth-year Ob/Gyn resident at Monmouth Medical Center, have collaborated on a paper that examines the role of endometrial receptivity array in patients during their first frozen embryo transfers.

Along with being selected to present their findings at the 68th Annual Meeting of the Pacific Coast Reproductive Society, held in March 2020, Dr. Ziegler and Gowda are publishing their study in the journal Fertility and Sterility, the official publication of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the Society for Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility.

Congratulations to Dr. Ziegler and Radhika Hombale-Gowda. You can read the article here: EVALUATING THE ROLE OF ENDOMETRIAL RECEPTIVITY ARRAY

 

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‘Everything your heart will need to hear’

Our patient Alexis posted her thoughts about her care at RSCNJ recently.

“I can’t say enough positive things about Dr. Martinez and the entire Lawrenceville staff. Anyone seeking a fertility doctor is filled with so many questions and worries. This man will just say everything your heart will need to hear and back it up with amazing service! It was an answered prayer that we met and worked with his staff. We are currently expecting baby no. 2 thanks to Dr. Martinez!”

Alexis, Congratulations! Thank you so much for your kind words. We really appreciate everyone who takes the time to share their experience with us. You can read more like this one at our web site.

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