CAN TWO MEN (or women) HAVE KIDS???

Jim Cummins cummins at central.murdoch.edu.au
Mon Nov 18 01:45:24 EST 1996


In article <328E5E4F.DFC at mit.edu>, Bugra Giritlioglu <bgiritli at mit.edu> wrote:

> I am curious to see what people know about the possibility of same-sex
> parenting, i.e. the possibility of achieving fertilization by combining
> the genetic material from two sperms (or two eggs).

This probably would not work as differential methylation during genomic
imprinting in the gonad treats the male genes differently from the
female.  Male genes acting in the embryo serve to maximise growth and
placental function at the expense of the maternal organism.  Female genes
serve to mimimise growth and preserve the maternal interest.   One would
have to de-imprint the genes to have same-sex fertilization.  Occasionally
one gets a dispermic egg developing without the egg's genes participating
- the end result if a hydatidiform mole - a monster.  Ocasionally eggs
will activate spontaneously in the ovary and result in an ovarian
teratoma.  So we DO need two genders!

-- 
URL http://numbat.murdoch.edu.au/spermatology/spermhp.html



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