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Can Stem Cells Make Sperm?

If We Can Make Sperm, What Good Are Men?

Have you ever dreamed of a world without men? Some scientists have hoped for years that someday, somehow, they'd create sperm without the mess and fuss of sex and men. Well, that day is near.

Or here, according to one professor at the Northeast England Stem Cell Institute, who says he's doctored up the world's first embryotic sperm. Other sperm specialists (their mothers must be proud) are not so convinced test-tube sperm are up for the swim. Azim Surani, a professor at Cambridge University, said they were "sperm-like cells" and "a long way from being authentic."

So we wait and ask questions, like "what's the point?" Ideally, it would be used to treat infertile men, but you can't clone cells in 2009 and not answer questions like "Are you trying to wipe men off the face of the Earth?" The Guardian has a pair of he-said/she-said pieces musing on such a world without men. He said? You'll be bored, less productive, and too clean. And she said? We'd be peaceful, clean, and . . . bored. Glad we can agree on something!

Photo by Flickr User blmurch

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