In Focus: Scratching the surface of ovarian tissue
Scratching the surface. This confocal micrograph provides a glimpse (an unusual one at that) of what the outer portions of the ovary look like if one were to take a just a shallow slice of tissue from the ovarian surface, such as might be done in the case of a biopsy.
From left to right, the image depicts an epithelium (red stipple), which sits on top of a fibrous matrix (green) and beneath which are cells (blue) that represent the ovarian stroma. The latter is where primordial follicles, each containing a potential egg, can reside for many years before being called into action when a follicle is stimulated to grow.
Such tissue preparations are now being studied in many laboratories around the world to understand what the signals are that tell a follicle to remain “asleep” or “wake-up” in anticipation of it undergoing ovulation sometime in the future.
Norbert Gleicher, MD, leads CHR’s clinical and research efforts as Medical Director and Chief Scientist. A world-renowned specialist in reproductive endocrinology, Dr. Gleicher has published hundreds of peer-reviewed papers and lectured globally while keeping an active clinical career focused on ovarian aging, immunological issues and other difficult cases of infertility.
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