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   DIVISION OF MALE REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE AND SURGERY                   
I had 3 semen tests all of which showed absence of sperms.The specialist did blood tests for hormones and they all looked fine. He then did a testis biopsy and he told me my sperms were not maturing. Up to now I do not have children. My questions are; 1. Is there any way I can be treated to start producing sperms? 2. Is there any way sperms can be produced from any other cells on my body as long as they carry my genetic material? 3. Can you insert tissues that make sperms from one individual to another? 4. I am interested in participating in fertility research, how can I be recruited?

Some treatable conditions that can cause maturation arrest include varicoceles or hormonal problems. In many cases, though, it might be an undetectable genetic defect.

In vitro maturation has been done in mice, but it is still in the experimental phase in humans. Making germ cells (sperm) from other body cells is still experimental. We are not able to transfer the supporting cells for spermatogenesis at this time. Similarly, we cannot transfer sperm precursor cells from one-person to another. And, if we did this, the recipients sperm would likely have DNA from the donor, so the children would not truly be biologically related to the recipient.

For someone with maturation arrest on biopsy (and no obvious treatable causes), we would usually perform microdissection testicular sperm extraction, which would carry an approximately 60% chance of finding sperm that could then be used for IVF/ICSI.

Often times, at the time of surgery, we will harvest and tissue that we use for many research studies designed to better understand male infertility. I can explain a number of these to patients when they come and visit our facility.