Ray of hope for same-sex couples: Asexual reproduction possible among mammals!
Science & Technology

Ray of hope for same-sex couples: Asexual reproduction possible among mammals!

Beijing, Oct 14: Good news for the LGBTQ+ community, as Chinese scientists have achieved success in reproducing healthy offspring from two female mammals.

They have successfully produced healthy mice with two mothers that went on to have normal offspring of their own. Mice from two dads were also born but only survived for a couple of days. According to the report published on Thursday in the journal Cell Stem Cell, researchers at the Chinese Academy of Sciences successfully produced healthy mice with two mothers that went on to have normal offspring of their own. The experiment was also repeated with two dads.

"We were interested in the question of why mammals can only undergo sexual reproduction. We have made several findings in the past by combining reproduction and regeneration, so we tried to find out whether more normal mice with two female parents, or even mice with two male parents, could be produced using haploid embryonic stem cells with gene deletions," said co-senior author Qi Zhou.The researchers created the mice with two mothers by deleting three imprinting regions of the genome from a female parent's DNA and injected them into eggs from another female mouse. They produced 29 live mice from 210 embryos. The mice were normal, lived to adulthood, and had babies of their own.

Twelve live, full-term mice with two genetic fathers were produced using a similar procedure. Co-senior author Wei Li noted that there were still obstacles to using these methods in other mammals, including the need to identify problematic imprinted genes that are unique to each species and concerns for the offspring that don't survive or that experience severe abnormalities.

"This research shows us what's possible. We saw that the defects in bimaternal mice can be eliminated and that bipaternal reproduction barriers in mammals can also be crossed through imprinting modification,' Li told the Science Daily.

'We also revealed some of the most important imprinted regions that hinder the development of mice with same sex parents, which are also interesting for studying genomic imprinting and animal cloning," he added. (UNI)