Updated on 11 May 2015
The company said that it is targeting a global market worth several billion euros in which there are currently no players
Singapore: Raising hopes of treatment for millions of infertile men across the globe, researchers from France have created an artificial sperm in the laboratory, a feat which would be the world's first.
The Lyon-based company, Kallistem, said that the technology developed can be used to obtain fully formed spermatozoa [sperm] in vitro with sufficient yield for IVF.
Ms Isabelle Cuoc, the CEO of the Kallistem laboratory, said, "We are addressing a major issue whose impact can be felt worldwide: the treatment of male infertility. This would benefit tens of thousands of infertile men who cannot develop their own sperm."
Researchers explained that they have developed the male fertility tissue spermatogonia into a mature sperm in test tubes in a process takes 72 days. Ms Cuoc added that the lab is "targeting a global market worth several billion euros in which there are currently no players."
Kallistem wants to show the procedure will be safe for humans in preclinical trials, which will begin in 2016. If the preclinical trials are successful, the company said it will be able to assist the birth of an infant during testing.
Kallistem said it can remove a sample of immature spermatogonia from a male subject and then transform the genetic material into mature sperm to be used in IVF procedures. The sperm can also be frozen for use later.