Our goals were to investigate methods for improving the reprogramming of somatic cells from patients to produce patient-specific embryonic stem cell lines. We have set up an improved method to cryo-preserve unfertilized human oocytes discarded from the In Vitro Fertilization clinic and demonstrated that thawed oocytes maintain their normal morphology. We have also surveyed all hormones produced by the early embryos and identified key receptors in early embryos. Based on these information, we included embryo-derived growth factors into our culture media to improve the development of reprogrammed somatic cell nuclei. Due to the limited supply of discarded human oocytes and their poor developmental potential, only limited success was achieved in the re-programming of somatic cell nuclei and no embryonic stem cells were derived during this funding period.