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Computer-automated, time-lapse embryo photography may increase success of IVF
Date:7/2/2014

PHILADELPHIA - Using computer-automated, time‐lapse photography of embryos in the laboratory during in-vitro fertilization may improve embryo selection, potentially increasing the chances of pregnancy among women undergoing the procedure, according to new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and five other fertility centers. Results of the study were presented this week at the 30th annual European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) meeting in Munich, Germany.

The researchers at Penn and their collaborators used the Early Embryo Viability Assessment imaging device (or Eeva, developed and manufactured by Auxogyn, Inc.), which records images of developing embryos during the first three days of laboratory culture, to evaluate embryos transferred into the uterine cavity of 177 patients. The testing process involved fitting the devices into a standard incubator and using dark field imaging to capture high resolution, single-plane pictures of embryos housed in a petri dish, at five-minute intervals. The images were then fed into a software program that uses several measures to assess the embryo's developmental potential rating them high, medium, or low for their capacity to reach the blastocyst stage by the fifth or sixth day of culture. Embryos normally implant at the blastocyst stage when they have divided into about 100-200 cells and it is and it is known that blastocysts have a much greater chance of implanting successfully and resulting in an ongoing, viable pregnancy.

Information on the embryo quality rating was not available to clinicians during the IVF procedures that were part of the study, but when researchers unblinded the study results, they found that patients with at least one "high" rated embryo transferred had a 54 percent viable pregnancy rate compared to a 34 percent rate for those following transfer of only a "low" rated embryo.

"Our findings provide
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Contact: Katie Delach
katie.delach@uphs.upenn.edu
215-349-5964
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert

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