Sunday 3 April 2016

Posted by Howzto
No comments | 18:12

Scientists have identified a switch that triggers the 'power kick' that sperms use to fertilize a human egg. Thus, they seem to have uncovered a source of male infertility & a target for unisex contraceptives. Progesterone stimulates the switch which is essentially a protein receptor. Scores of these switches are found on the surface of a sperm's tail & when the sperm gets close to the egg, the hormone activates the receptor. This causes the tail to snap and provides the thrust or powering the sperm through the cells protecting the egg. Basically a person is infertile if the switch doesn't recognize progesterone. So a drug that inactivates the receptor would prove to be a good contraceptive. One that could be used by either sexual partner.
Researchers observed the behaviour of the sperm's tail after sticking electrodes. This led to discovery of the progesterone activated receptor now called CatSper.


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