How long can testes stay 'alive' after they have been removed?

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Deborah Redwood

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Deborah Redwood  asked the Naked Scientists:
   Gulp, okay, here goes... I am in the process of writing a book.  In this book, the main character is a scientist studying the Y chromosome at the CDC.  Her husband has been critically injured in a motorcycle accident.  It is kind of a long story, but basically before he dies he tells her he wants her to donate his testes to a study she wants to do. Since it is set a bit in the future, I am going to state that there is a way to maintain organs outside of the body in a 'pristine condition' quoting the words you used in a February 2008 internet article on "Keeping Organs Alive" that I stumbled upon while researching organ harvesting.  That article is what led me to send you this email.  
So this my question... is there anyone who written about something like this that I can read?  To your knowledge, has anyone done this?  How long could they survive? Would they be able to still produce sperm?

The story line has quite a few scientifically possible although not probable aspects to it and I am trying to minimize the 'science fiction feeling' of it as much as possible. 

Thanks in advance for your assistance and best regards, 

Debbie Redwood

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« Last Edit: 30/09/2011 13:01:14 by _system »