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Early embryos can correct genetic abnormalities during development
Date:7/5/2011

for all chromosome abnormalities. If the results of this screening show that the embryo is normal, then either it undergoes uterine transfer or is frozen for future use. In cases where PGS evaluation yields a biopsied cell that is chromosomally abnormal, standard practice is to discard the corresponding embryo."

From April 2010 onwards, Prof Kearns and Dr Paul Brezina, an obstetrics and gynaecology doctor and an infertility fellow at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, and their colleagues recruited 12 women who required PGS by microarrays of all 23 pairs of chromosomes and, after undergoing in vitro fertilisation (IVF), there were 126 embryos that they were able to biopsy at day three. (Microarrays are a method of rapidly scanning large amounts of DNA).

In a statement before the conference, Dr Brezina explained: "In the IVF laboratory, all embryos that undergo PGS on day three are cultured to the blastocyst stage of development at day five, at which time the PGS results are available. In this study we evaluated all embryos that developed to the blastocyst stage with documented chromosomal abnormalities not compatible with a live birth from a cell taken from the embryo on day three. At the blastocyst stage, the embryo has developed into two parts; the inner cell mass (ICM), which has cells that will form the foetus, and the trophectoderm (TE), which has cells that will form the placenta. Instead of taking a biopsy from either of these cell types, we dissected the entire embryo and captured as much of the ICM and TE cells as possible. These ICM and TE cells were isolated into two separate groups. Using microarrays we tested these groups for chromosomal abnormalities. We had the potential to detect mosaicism (the presence of several different cell lines within a single embryo) at a rate of approximately five percent, but we did not see mosaicism in any of the ICM or TE samples evaluated.

"This underscores the importance of our methodolo
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Contact: Hanna Hanssen
hanna@eshre.eu
32-047-335-3381
European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology
Source:Eurekalert

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