24 July 2015

Improving IVF outcomes through better embryo selection

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Melbourne IVF

The Preimplantation Genetics Laboratory at Melbourne IVF has been chosen as the only IVF unit in the southern hemisphere to participate in a world-wide clinical study to evaluate Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS) using Next Generation Sequencing.

Melbourne IVF has been selected to participate in a world-wide clinical study to evaluate pregnancy outcomes in women undergoing IVF with Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS) using the Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) platform.

The STAR clinical trial aims to determine if biopsy and genetic testing (PGS) of an embryo results in a better outcome than the standard method of selecting an embryo, based on its appearance (morphology) and ability to grow to the blastocyst stage of development.

The study will examine 600 women world-wide around the five IVF centres participating.

Melbourne IVF Medical Director, Dr Lyndon Hale said he anticipates that the results of the trial will help establish the potential benefit of PGS and the application of screening tests to determine embryonic development or even causes of infertility.

 “We anticipate the information gathered will help us determine the role of PGS in improving success rates on the IVF program and assist in implementing improved treatment options for our patients,” said Dr Hale.

"The application of Preimplantation Genetic Screening (PGS) and Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) technology is rapidly evolving and we are focused on improving the evidence available to determine the benefit of this technology for various groups of patients,” he said.

Read more information about the STAR trial and whether you're eligible to participate.

Watch Dr Sharyn Stock-Meyer, Scientific Director Preimplantation Genetics, Melbourne IVF discuss screening embryos for chromosome abnormalities.

A long standing history of investing in research

The Preimplantation Genetics Laboratory at Melbourne IVF has been providing PGD for over 10 years and performs more embryo screening cases for chromosomal abnormalities than any other IVF unit in Victoria.

Melbourne IVF is now the first and only centre in Australia offering karyomapping, which is a significant advancement for couples wanting to avoid the transmission of a hereditary condition such as Huntington’s disease. Karyomapping significantly reduces the time taken for couples accessing PGD for single gene disorders, as individualised tests that took months to develop previously are no longer necessary.