Stem cells are undifferentiated native body cells in the embryonic, fetal and adult life stages that give rise to differentiated cells of different lineages. Embryonic stem cells are derived from the pre-implantation embryo whereas the most commonly used stem cells for therapy, namely the mesenchymal stem cells, are adult, multipotent stem cells that are derived from a variety of tissues including the bone marrow, umbilical cord, and adipose tissue. These cells can differentiate into different body cells and give rise to newer tissues. Due to this amazing property of stem cells, they have been regarded as highly potent candidates in regenerative medicine as stem cells can help in the repair and rejuvenation of damaged tissues. Owing to the same property, stem cells can differentiate to develop various types of specialized gamete cells, including male and female gametes, suggesting the potential of stem cell therapy for infertility, the reproductive medicine.

Male Infertility

Most cases of un-identified infertility accounts for male infertility and although erectile dysfunction is a male reproductive issue, infertility doesn’t generally deal with erectile problems. Male infertility is based onlow sperm production, abnormal sperm function or vessel blockages to delay or prevent sperm delivery. Non-obstructive azoospermia is the most severe form of male infertility in which semen contains no sperm. Aside from azoospermia, asthenozoospermia is also a form of male infertility in which sperm motility is affected.These conditions are mostly due to impairment of spermatogenesis and sperm functions.

Stem cell treatment in case of male infertility helps in the repairing of tubules and vessels of sperm production and delivery by regenerative potential and helps in enhancing spermatogenesis and sexual hormonal balance. Stem cell therapy has also been shown to enhance sperm motility and reduce inflammatory problems during ejaculation, besides improving erectile function.

Female Infertility

Just like male infertility deals with deregulated spermatocyte production and delivery, female infertility deals with deregulated oocyte production and delivery, mostly due to damaged ovaries, cystic issues or deregulated menstruation. Besides these problems, female infertility also deals with poor endometrial receptivity leading to lower chances of fertilized egg attachment to the uterus and implantation failures due to endometriosis or uterine scar tissue formation (Asherman syndrome).

Stem cell-based therapeutic strategies for ovarian regeneration and oogenesis have already been researched on and reports show enhanced production of oocytes besides thickening of endometrial lining to support implantation. Stem cell therapies have also shown potential in improving sexual female hormonal balance and improvement in endometriosis by preventing retrograde menstruation and scar tissue formation.

Therefore, stem cell therapies have become a beacon of light for male and female infertility problems with regenerative therapies gaining the upper hand as compared to conventional medications. There are obviously limitations to the technology in terms of stem cell populations and lineage differentiation but regenerative medicine using stem cells have been proven to be a safe and natural treatment regime when it comes to complicated medical issues like infertility. To consult and know more regarding stem cell therapy for infertility in India, contact