Child born after transplanted ovarian tissue

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Child born in clinic through transplanted ovarian tissue

As announced on Thursday, Erlangen researchers can now look forward to the birth of a child for the second time after a successful retransplantation of frozen ovarian tissue. Four years ago, the 32-year-old from Nuremberg, Sandra G. contracted breast cancer and became sterile due to chemotherapy. Thanks to retransplantation, she gave birth to a healthy daughter in a natural way a few days ago.

Transplantation of ovarian tissue successful for breast cancer patient for the first time As the university hospital reported on Friday, little Isabel was born on Sunday, August 26, 2012 at 2:21 pm in the women's clinic. The healthy girl weighed 3,070 grams with a size of 50 centimeters. Sandra G is the first breast cancer patient in Germany to have this procedure successfully and was carried out entirely in one place, the University Hospital Erlangen.

After suffering from breast cancer in 2008, the young woman decided to remove ovarian tissue, which was then frozen. Sandra G. hoped that the subsequent retransplantation of the tissue, despite the sterility caused by chemotherapy, would be able to fulfill her wish to have children. "Before the first chemotherapy, my doctor explained to me that there was an experimental procedure that could give me the chance to have children of my own," says the young woman. "This option was a straw for me during this difficult time was able to hold on to the future. "

The frozen tissue was thawed two years after the successful cancer therapy of the nurse from Nuremberg and transplanted back fully functional in August 2011. "The tissue became hormonally active again and a normal follicle growth could be determined using ultrasound," reports the biologist Professor Ralf Dittrich, scientific director of reproductive medicine at the University Hospital Erlangen. "To date, 13 times worldwide a patient who has become sterile has been able to give birth to a child naturally after retransplanting her cryopreserved ovarian tissue," the clinic said in a press release.

Hope for cancer patients through transplantation of frozen ovarian tissue Around 17,000 women between the ages of 15 and 45 develop cancer each year in Germany. Although modern, improved treatment methods have significantly increased the survival rate of the patients, it often led to infertility, reports the clinic. This consequence is particularly dramatic for young women who still have family planning ahead of them. The Erlangen-based researchers see the so-called cryopreservation of ovarian tissue as a promising opportunity for affected women to fulfill their desire to have children at a later date.

"The chances of our patients getting pregnant after a successful retransplantation of ovarian tissue are as good or bad as any healthy woman," explains Professor Matthias W. Beckmann, director of the women's clinic at the University Hospital Erlangen. “Our research success clearly shows that it is possible to restore the ovarian function of cancer patients. This is a sign of hope for numerous women: they can be given back the possibility of hormone production and having children. ”That is why Beckmann emphasizes:“ Women of childbearing age with cancer must be informed about the new possibility of maintaining their fertility before starting therapy. ”

As Klaus Diedrich, former director of the clinic for gynecology and obstetrics at the University Hospital in Lübeck, told the news agency "dpa", the ovarian tissue could possibly recover naturally after cancer therapy. He judges the success of the Erlangen researchers with a “50 to 50” chance that this is due to tissue that has recovered after chemotherapy.

Since 2007, ovarian tissue retransplantation in Erlangen has been carried out on eleven women. Although the procedure never failed, only two of the patients gave birth to children. In total, this was only achieved 13 times worldwide, as the Erlangen clinic announced. (ag)

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Photo credit: Petra Dietz /

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Video: Cancer patient gives birth after ovarian tissue transplant

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