Los Angeles, CA, April 25, 2018 – California Cryobank (Cryobank), the world’s largest donor sperm bank, just launched into a whole new stratosphere – on the back of an Elon Musk rocket headed straight to the International Space station.
Talk about a UFO (Unidentified Frozen Object)…
As part of a scientific study code-named "Micro-11", NASA's Ames Research Center (through research partner University of Kansas) approached California Cryobank to specially prepare frozen donor specimens to determine the feasibility of human reproduction in space. The project will study how microgravity affects a sperm’s potential ability to fertilize an egg. Researchers began by studying the motility and progression of a control group of specimens here on earth. Once the space specimens return, the two results will be compared.
"Our team sent out requests to a select group of our donors we knew had the 'right stuff' for the study," explained Kaj Rydman, VP of Operations. "The response was overwhelming. We had far more volunteers than NASA needed."
Although bull and sea urchin sperm have been studied outside the Earth's atmosphere, this is the first time human gametes have blasted off.
As the frozen donor sperm and egg industry leader with 40 years experience and more than 75,000 children born, California Cryobank receives regular requests to participate in scientific studies. "We send out over a thousand research vials a year," says Cryobank’s Chief Operating Officer Pamela Richardson. "But this one is definitely special. We're honored to have been invited to participate in the program."
About California Cryobank
California Cryobank provides frozen donor sperm and egg services, reproductive tissue storage, and cord blood/tissue banking (through FamilyCord) and is registered with the FDA, accredited by the AATB and AABB, and licensed by the states of California and New York. Cryobank is a portfolio company of two healthcare-focused private investment firms, Longitude Capital and NovaQuest Capital Management.