Description

The survival rate of children diagnosed with cancer has improved thanks to more effective radio- and chemotherapy. Although for long it was assumed that children were more resistant to gonadotoxic treatments, now, we know that they are at risk for lifelong sterility too. Since spermatogenesis only starts after puberty, pre-pubertal boys cannot benefit from semen banking before treatment. Because the progenitor cells (spermatogonial stem cells or SSCs) are present in
the testis, cryopreservation of testicular tissue may prevent sterility in young boys exposed to gonadotoxic treatments.
In the past two decades, the research group biology of the testis (BITE) at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel has performed pioneering work concerning the development of fertility preservation strategies. Since 2002, the university hospital (UZ Brussel) has stored testicular tissue from more than 100 paeditric patients. Some of these patients have been followed up by both an oncologist
and an endocrinologist. In this project, we aim to:
(1) perform a retrospective study to evaluate the impact of harvesting testicular tissue at childhood on the later pubertal development;
(2) standardize the follow-up protocol in collaboration with other European centers offering testicular tissue banking;
(3) perform a European-wide prospective study to evaluate the impact of harvesting testicular tissue at childhood on the later pubertal development and fertility status at adult age (>18 years).
AcronymFWOAL891
StatusFinished
Effective start/end date1/01/1831/12/19

    Research areas

  • Cancer, fertility, follow-up

    Flemish discipline codes

  • Cancer therapy

ID: 36622006