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American Fertility Association Calls for Expanded Research to Advance New Technology to Screen Embryos for Genetic Abnormalities
Date:10/18/2007

Research presented this week at American Society for Reproductive Medicine

meeting could significantly improve ability to identify embryos that

present high risk of birth defects or miscarriage for IVF patients AFA supports efforts to bring advanced screening technology to patients as quickly as possible to improve health and safety of women and babies in IVF

procedures

NEW YORK, Oct. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- According to results of a research effort presented this week at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine meeting, researchers have for the first time successfully used a new screening technology to analyze all 46 chromosomes in a human embryonic cell. The procedure makes it possible to screen all chromosomes in embryonic cells to identify genetic abnormalities that increase the risk of birth defects and miscarriage.

"The current technology used to screen embryos for defects analyzes only a small number of chromosomes, making it impossible to detect many of the known genetic abnormalities linked to miscarriage and birth defects. As a result, thousands of women and babies are at risk every year," said Pamela Madsen, executive director of The American Fertility Association, adding, "This procedure makes it possible to analyze all of the chromosomes in an embryonic cell, representing one of the most significant advances in reproductive medicine in a decade. We must work to bring this new technology to patients as quickly as possible."

The procedure, known as "Accurate 23 chromosome aneuploidy screening in human blastomeres using single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP)," makes it possible for the first time to fully evaluate the genetic make up of human embryos quickly and accurately enough to use that information to help improve pregnancy rates, reduce miscarriage risk, and decrease the risk of major congenital anomalies such as Down syndrome for patients treated with IVF. The study was conducte
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SOURCE American Fertility Association
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