SHENZHEN, China, July 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The largest genomic institute of the world, BGI Shenzhen, China (hereinafter BGI), together with Reproductive & Genetic Hospital CITIC-XIANGYA (hereinafter CITIC-XIANGYA) announced today that they have successfully applied Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) to detect in vitro fertilized (IVF) embryos with genetic abnormalities. The successful application of preimplantation sequencing (the most advanced form of preimplantation genetic screening, PGS) opens a new chapter in the field of human assisted reproduction, providing new hope for IVF couples.
In preimplantation sequencing, 7 to 12 cells are removed from morphologically normal human embryos 5 days after fertilization in vitro. Embryos are subsequently cryopreserved by vitrification, and samples are analyzed by using the latest DNA technologies to detect abnormalities. Only genetically intact embryos are transferred to the uterus during the subsequent cycle, with minimal or no hormonal stimulation.
Since 2010, as a result of collaboration between BGI and CITIC-XIANGYA, sequenced embryos from 33 couples were transferred, and 22 pregnancies were achieved. The success rate was 66.7%. Up to now, 17 healthy babies have been born.
On August 24, 2012, the world's first IVF baby sequenced before implantation was born in Hunan Province, China. Five days after fertilization in vitro, 7 embryos were biopsied and all samples were shipped to BGI for preimplantation sequencing. Based on a combination of NGS and bioinformatics analysis, 3 embryos were found to have normal chromosomal content and two of them were selected for transfer resulting in pregnancy. The baby is now 11 months old, healthy and developing normally.
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