Clinical IVF Support
Embryo and oocyte cryostorage
Genea has always been at the forefront of bringing new reproductive technologies to patients. Our multinational, multi-centre research and clinical team work together to accelerate the clinical implementation of new ART techniques. One such technology is the technique called vitrification (for cryopreservation of embryos). Our innovative blastocyst vitrification protocol has been in use at Genea since 2006. Vitrification involves the "snap-freezing" of the embryo at the blastocyst stage (day 5-7 of development) and is much less damaging than the traditional slow freeze process. The big advantages of vitrification over slow-freezing are its simplicity and a 98% embryo survival rate. At Genea, we have found that the pregnancy rate for women under 38 who had blastocyst transfer was higher with vitrified embryos (47%) compared to slow-frozen embryos (35%, for January to November in 2006).
Our oocyte and cleavage stage vitrification program is currently evaluated in a multinational multi-centre trial. The cryopreservation of human oocytes offers advantages for patients as it can be used for cycles complicated by ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome, failure to obtain sperm and to avoid synchronization issues in oocyte-donation cycles. This technology may also be used for fertility preservation with patients faced with a diagnosis of cancer and subsequent chemotherapy. Reliable and safe oocyte preservation is also essential for research on somatic cell nuclear transfer to be used for the development of new therapeutics for diseases such as Parkinson's, and diabetes. Once again, we are leading in the implementation of safe and reliable modern ART techniques and maintaining Genea's world class clinical service, through cutting edge research and development.
To elucidate mechanisms responsible for failed embryo development and implantation the research department is running genetic studies on DNA provided by patients who are unfortunate in having recurring miscarriages. The studies aim to identify genes that are commonly associated with recurring miscarriage and ultimately develop potential preventative treatments. We are currently examining genes associated with DNA processing pathways as well as genes that are influenced by nutrition. It is not expected that a single gene will be responsible for all miscarriage causes but such studies may be useful in reducing the impact of common genetic variations in the miscarriage process.