A Symposium: The Gathering of Fertile Minds for the Sake of Fertility
The Symposium on Optimal Approaches to Safe and Efficient IVF for the advancement of fertility in women kicked off this fall at the Mandarin Hotel in New York City.
Sponsored by the Catherine Foundation, this symposium aka conference, covered many issues with regards to research from genetic infertility to aging.
The conference was hosted by the New Hope Fertility Center of Manhattan and the Art World Congress. The Art World Congress is a board of fertility specialists that mainly work as a vessel to organize symposiums globally, in regards to women’s health care and fertility.
The 9th annual symposium had over 30 physicians and researchers from abroad, speaking on vast expanse research of what will be the next frontier in helping families grow.
The three-day conference covered different approaches to IVF (in-vitro fertilization ) and the advances in helping women across the spectrum.
Highlighted information included Assisted Hatching, which is a preferred process for older women whose embryo lining may be too thick to receive the sperm. Usually, younger eggs will thin out by the 6th day ready for sperm. This process helps thin out the lining to allow for fertilization on the 7th day for mature patients.
Then, there is the Embryo Scope, which allows the embryologists to watch multiple embryos for a period of time to see which has the strongest chance of surviving fertilization and implementation into the uterus. This procedure uses time lapse photography to sort out the healthiest of embryos.
Once a healthy embryo is approved for inception a procedure is implemented. One of the most popular procedures is the Frozen Embryo Transfer. This does not require any anesthetics and the thawed embryo is inserted through a catheter much like a pap smear. Turkey baster anyone?
This transfer has caused controversy over the years as being the main reason for surprise multiple births. This procedure unlike other in-vitro procedures creates an environment within the uterus to proliferate embryonic tissue.
Many factors with in-vitro fertilization’s can offset actual pregnancy occurring. For one thing a woman’s health, age, and genetics come into play.
“To this day we have not identified any mutations in humans that could contribute to what we call persistently Early Embryo Female Type 1,” said Dr. Andrea Jurisicova from the Investigator at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute of Mount Sinai Hospital and an Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaeology at the University of Toronto.
Dr. Jurisicova researches female fertility and genetic researching.
Some of Dr. Jurisicova’s research is on female predispositions, as well as, her study when women are exposed to what is called Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons. These elements are not just in cigarette smoke or car exhaust, but also fumes from wood stoves, as well as, charred and smoked foods. This research can cut chances of pregnancy by two thirds.
There is also some exciting news for woman over 35 who are looking into having a child but are not so keen to freeze an ovary or two at 25.
Up until recently, 35 years of age was considered a time when the clock ran out for most women in regards to having a healthy baby without concern of health issues.
According to researchers there are new studies using mice embryos and in some cases primates to study the lining of embryos. As a woman ages the follicles on the lining of the embryos breaks down and decreases, now with new research we are finding a means to extend a woman’s fertility into generating healthy embryos past the age of 35.
“You can actually control this decline and rate of follicle loss and extend reproductive life. This has become my actual main research as a fellow to study ovarian aging in general,” said Dr. Kutluk Oktay of the New Hope Fertility Center.
Dr. Kutluk Oktay has specialized in fertilization of post cancer patients and sits as a co-chair of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Committee for Fertility Preservation Guideline for People with Cancer.
The study of fertilization has still away to go. There is still concern about clinics reading false positives as negatives and vice versa.
“The clinical outcome is improved but technically we can reduce the false negatives.” “We don’t know until we do a large scale trial but I hope it will improve,” said Xiaoliang Qiu MD, PhD researcher in medical genetics, endocrinology, neuroscience, and oncology at Stony Brook Medicine.
The future looks promising for women of all ages and the panel of esteemed physicians and the research are advancing. The symposium is an annual event that will continue to bring news of fertility by researchers worldwide.
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