The germ cell lineage originates early in development and undergoes a series of complex developmental processes that culminate in the generation of fully matured gametes, the spermatozoa and the oocytes. Remarkably, researchers have been recapitulating these developmental pathways using mouse and human pluripotent stem cells (PSCs). With further studies, including those involving non-human primate models, human gametogenesis may be fully reconstituted from PSCs, which would profoundly facilitate our understanding of human germ cell development and infertility. Here we discuss groundbreaking studies that lay the foundation for this achievement, the current state of the field, and challenges for deriving gametes from hPSCs.
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