Scientists have sequenced the full genomes of 91 sperm from one man, the first complete sequencing of a human gamete cell. It demonstrates the vast genetic variation in one person, according to genetic researchers at Stanford.
An ultrasound zap to the testicles can stop the production of sperm, reducing overall sperm count to a level that would render males infertile, according to a new study involving rats. Further studies are still needed to test how long this new contraceptive method would last, and whether infertility could be reversed. But for the researchers studying rat and monkey testicles, the early results are pretty gratifying.
A new study, led by Dr. Klaus Reinhardt at the University of Sheffield, shows that females of some species can prolong the lifespan of ordinarily short-lived sperm cells by days, months, or even decades, waiting for the optimal time to use it. The study could have some big implications for the general study of aging, as well.
Scientists hard at work at eradicating malaria have often focused on the malaria-carrying mosquito, creating solutions ranging from genetic modification to malaria-attacking fungi to stinky sock lures (and about a billion more). The latest is a radiation treatment that effectively makes some male mosquitoes sterile--which, due to the particular mating habits of these mosquitoes, could have a drastic effect on mosquito populations.
The birth control pill turns 50 this month -- the birth control pill for women, that is. While researchers have searched for a hormonal contraceptive pill for men for at least that long, so far they've been unsuccessful. Men produce a thousand sperm each second versus the monthly female egg, making the male reproductive process harder to control. But researchers think they may have finally found a safe and simple means of temporarily stopping sperm production using a common clinical device: ultrasound.
The male birth control pill has lingered for years tantalizingly just out of reach, in the realm where rumor meets science. Recently developed hormonal and mechanical contraceptives never found an audience, serving only to highlight the absence of a male pill. Now, an examination of how smoking pot lowers fertility may make the male pill more than a persistent rumor.
As if having trouble conceiving a child wasn't painful enough, the current method of male fertility testing adds to that misery with multiple trips to the doctor, awkward moments in sterile rooms, and lengthy waits while lab technicians painstakingly count out individual sperm. A newly developed chip may change that, and provide a fast, at-home method for anyone to test their sperm count.
Our sperm and eggs give us one of the greatest responsibilities on the planet: the potential to generate new life, to put forth onto the Earth another living, breathing, thinking, feeling being. Or, they can be sold for a buck.
Brainiacs now have something besides their intelligence to celebrate; their sperm. The intellectually endowed produce better quality and more mobile sperm, according to a study published in Intelligence and led by Rosalind Arden of the Institute of Psychiatry at King's College in England.
Last January, an Australian engineer announced a bizarre new contraceptive for men: a radio-controlled implant that could block the flow of sperm with the click of a button. The device, which is still in the conceptual stages, is the latest in a growing number of experimental male birth-control methods—including sperm plugs, sperm dissolvers and heat-inducing gels—that don’t tinker with testosterone.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.