Human eggs divide without sperm

Did you know that human eggs contain a full complement of DNA but thar one set of chromosomes normally gets ejected within a few hours of fertilization? Me neither. Anyway, it seems that if you inject the egge with phospholipase C-zeta and do other tricky things, the egg starts to divide just as if a little swimmer had come along. And shortly thereafter you can harvest stem cells. Meanwhile the radical fringe reacted as you might expect:

Josephine Quintavalle of Comment on Reproductive Ethics, a London-based pro-life lobby group greeted the new procedure with caution. “I’d be happier if it was beyond all reasonable doubt that it could not become a human life.” She added that women must not be exploited to provide eggs.


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