SOURCE: Olive Fertility Centre

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June 02, 2016 14:10 ET

Olive Fertility Centre Participates in Comprehensive Chromosomal Screening for In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) Clinical Trial

VANCOUVER, BC--(Marketwired - June 02, 2016) - As one of the only 2 Canadian clinics involved in the STAR trial -- an international multicenter study to investigate the efficacy of next generation sequencing (NGS) for chromosomal screening of blastocysts-Olive Fertility Centre is a recognized leader in fertility treatment with comprehensive chromosomal screening (CCS).

According Dr Gary Nakhuda, a reproductive endocrinologist and Olive Fertility's lead researcher in the trial, CCS has ushered a paradigm shift in the practice of IVF. Instead of subjectively assessing embryos based on superficial appearance, CCS allows allowing fertility specialists to test cells from the developing embryos to determine which ones have the normal number of chromosomes and are the most likely to result in a successful pregnancy.

If an embryo has too few or too many chromosomes (a condition known as aneuploidy) the embryo will either never implant in the uterus, or result in a miscarriage or a baby with conditions such as Down syndrome.

IVF with CCS can achieve:

  • Pregnancy rates as high as 70%
  • Miscarriage rates as low as 10%
  • A very low risk of chromosomal problems such as Down's syndrome (diagnostic accuracy of CCS is about 99%)

Furthermore, selecting of a chromosomally normal embryo makes single embryo transfer feasible at any age, reducing the risk of complications from multiple pregnancies. Patients of all ages can benefit from CCS, but the marginal benefits are most significant in women of advanced reproductive age. Multiple clinical studies support the use of as a CCS validated method to improve IVF outcomes. 1

"At Olive, we have steadily increased the use of CCS over the last 3 years, so that now 50% of all patients proceeding with IVF elect to have CCS. Implantation rates of euploid embryos are 70%, consistent with published findings." Say Dr Nakhuda.

CCS significantly increases the costs of an IVF cycle. However many women and couples feel that, despite the added upfront costs, CCS may actually improve the cost effectiveness of IVF by reducing the number of failed transfers, miscarriages, and procedures related to unhealthy pregnancies. Also, instead of freezing all embryos that appear healthy, only those that are chromosomally normal will remain cryopreserved.

Dr Nakhuda is hopeful that, in time, the cost of the technology will decline making the process more accessible.

Olive Fertility Centre is one of Canada's largest fertility clinics, offering an advanced IVF lab, personal care teams and innovative programs that include the EmbryoScope, comprehensive chromosome screening (CCS), egg freezing, and prenatal NIPT testing.

1. Lee et al. Hum Reprod. 2015 Feb;30(2):473-83.

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