The human egg - the rarest and most rapidly aging cell in the body - is a topic of intense scientific study. Assisted reproduction clinics are constantly vying to improve success rates - choosing the best gametes is a key step in this process. This new edition of what one reviewer of the first edition described as 'possibly the definitive work on the oocyte' covers the development, biology and pathology of the oocyte, and technologies to manipulate, enhance and control fertility. These technologies are used to overcome infertility, avoid inherited diseases, and create genetically engineered embryos from stem cells and cloning. This progress would have been impossible without the myriad of scientific and technical developments covered in this book. The new edition is thoroughly updated and includes major new research on reprogramming, oocyte molecular development, cryopreservation and viability. We are in exciting times for the egg.