Dallas, Texas – December 19, 2011 – Infertility affects one in eight couples. Specialists at Dallas Fertility Associates work to determine causes of infertility and offer solutions to produce the healthy babies these couples desire. Recently, Dallas Fertility Associates has begun using trophectoderm biopsy to identify the best embryos for implantation, improving the chances of conception.
New technique in preimplantation genetic screening
This new technique in preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) offers a complete genetic analysis of multiple cells on five-day-old embryos, replacing inspection of the genetic material in one cell from an embryo on the third day after IVF egg retrieval.
Dr. Samuel Chantilis, a reproductive endocrinologist at Dallas Fertility Associates, explained the benefit. “The novel procedure replaces the Day 3 traditional biopsy. Not only does it risk less damage to the embryos, but we can also obtain more cellular material for better results.”
Until now, PGD was performed in the fertility lab using the genetic material from one cell of an eight-cell embryo, taken on the third day after egg and sperm were combined in the laboratory. Because of the limited amount of genetic material available in the eight-cell embryo, the assessment was somewhat flawed.
With a trophectoderm biopsy, embryologists remove the cells on the fifth day after sperm fertilizes the egg; at this point, the embryo has developed 60 to 100 cells. “This expanded window gives us access to a better genetic sample,” Dr. Chantilis explained. “We can actually screen 22 autosomal chromosomes and the X and Y chromosomes using array Comparative Genomic Hybridization (aCGH).” Array CGH is unique in that it allows simultaneous screening of multiple locations along the entire length of every chromosome. The test can also detect rare chromosome abnormalities present in the sample, while other techniques may not.
Because new PGS protocol analyzes the embryos on Day 5, the final transfer is delayed at least one month. Once the high-quality embryos are identified, they are preserved using an innovative fast-freezing process called vitrification. This newer method of preserving embryos results in less damage during freezing.
“This latest development in assisted reproductive technology will help us more accurately predict which embryos carry chromosomal abnormalities and which ones are more likely to survive implantation and result in viable pregnancies,” said Dr. Chantilis. “We hope to improve embryo implantation and pregnancy rates so that our patients can successfully achieve their goals of parenthood.”
About Dallas Fertility Associates
Dallas Fertility Associates is a private practice physicians’ office specializing in reproductive endocrinology and infertility treatment. Dr. Samuel Chantilis, Dr. Karen Lee, Dr. Mika Thomas, Dr. Ravi Gada and Dr. Laura Lawrence, our fertility specialists, are all fellowship-trained in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Our clinic was opened in an effort to bring the latest IVF treatments and procedures to the Dallas-Fort Worth community. For more information, please visit www.dallasfertility.com.