In Focus: DNA damages in ovarian follicles

This picture shows a small slice of ovary and each of the circles represents a special structure known as the ovarian follicle. Experiments ongoing at the CHR are aimed at understanding what changes in human egg cells as we age. For some of our research, we have to use animals – like mice as shown here – in order to study the changes in DNA that are believed to take place as the ovary ages. In this case, the red in this picture shows the DNA in two egg cells that has been damaged due to exposure to certain chemicals that are used to treat cancer. Each of the egg cells is encircled by the blue staining granulosa cells that make up an ovarian follicle. Research at CHR is aimed at offering fertility preservation to our patients by discovering exactly how radiation or chemotherapy may alter the egg DNA and most importantly, to determine how we can best protect it from damage due to aging or other causes.

In Focus, a regular feature in our newsletter, presents microscopic images from CHR’s laboratories, edited by our Director of the Division of Laboratories and Senior Scientist, David F. Albertini, PhD.

This is a part of the February 2017 VOICE.

Norbert Gleicher, MD, leads CHR’s clinical and research efforts as Medical Director and Chief Scientist. A world-renowned reproductive endocrinologist, 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.