Scientists believe co-enzyme Q10 could help older women produce healthier eggs for longer
Could a new fertility breakthrough take some of the chance out of getting pregnant for older women?
Canadian scientists believe they might have found a way to make it easier for women in their 40s and beyond to have babies. It's all about a clever little vitamin called co-enzyme Q10.
You might have heard of Q10 before, as it's often mentioned as the magic ingredient in posh face creams advertised on the TV.
There's so much advice around about how to get fertile but it sounds like this could really work. The Canadian fertility doctors have discovered that when they give Q10 to mice, it makes the older mice produce more eggs and they're healthier too.
A woman is born with all the eggs she'll ever have and by the time she's in her late 30s the quality of those eggs have severly declined, hence less chance of giving birth to a healthy baby. As more women than ever are leaving it later to have babies, the Q10 breakthrough could help millions.
The Q10 essentially helps to boost the energy in the cells.
Dr Robert Caspar, medical director of the Toronto Centre for Advanced Reproductive Technology explained: "What we found was that just treating the mice with the co-Q10 we got more eggs than when we gave them fertility drugs."
The only glitch so far seems to be that the mice were treated for 18 weeks - doesn't sound like much but in human lifespan terms it relates to 10 years of treatment.
Doctors are now preparing to these the supplement on women 35 and older who are undergoing fertility treatment.
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