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The Fertility Revolution

The Big Idea for Saturday, March 03, 2012

Humans alive today will live longer than members of any previous generation. We also have more choices when it comes to reproduction than ever before. 

For many women, that means not only living longer lives, but living happier, healthier, more fulfilling lives. Take Leigh Gallagher, Assistant Managing Editor at Fortune who recently told Big Think about her decision to leave her long-time partner and freeze her eggs. Gallagher says that advances in medicine that have allowed her to "put the biological clock on hold" have been "incredibly empowering."

In fact, new experimental research is turning conventional scientific wisdom on its head. It used to be thought that women are born with a finite number of eggs. No longer. A recent study by biologist Jonathan Tilly of Harvard's Mass General found that young women harbor very rare stem cells capable of producing new eggs, or oocytes. 

According to Tilly, this discovery "opens the door for development of unprecedented technologies to overcome infertility in women and perhaps even delay the timing of ovarian failure."

 

Perspectives

  1. 1 The Fertility Revolution Has Only Just Begun
    Daniel Honan Think Tank
  2. 2 Why I Froze My Eggs
    Leigh Gallagher Think Tank
  3. 3 How to Grow a Heart: Transforming Cells Into Human Organs
    Megan Erickson Floating University
  4. 4 A Short History of Stem Cell Research
    David Scadden
 

The Fertility Revolution

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