Women are born with all of the eggs they will ever have, unlike men, whose reproductive organs create millions of new sperm every day.
The quality of the chromosomes and DNA contained within each egg declines as women age, which is why the average 20-year-old has an 86 percent chance of becoming pregnant, whereas this drops to 36 percent for a 40-year-old on occasion.
That, however, may be about to change. Now, a team of researchers from Hebrew University in Israel has demonstrated that treating eggs with an anti-viral medicine can "reverse" the age of older human eggs.
The “reverse aged” eggs apparently had chromosomes that look more like those from younger eggs, less damaged DNA, and they matured better in test tubes.
The development hasn't been tested against fertilization; however, it may provide hope for women over 40 wanting to be mothers by extending childbearing into middle age.