Archive | Cryopreservation

Vitrified-warmed Blastocyst Transfers Found to have Similar Clinical Outcomes as Fresh Transfers

A vital component of any cryopreservation protocol used in ART is the minimal effect of the method on the preserved embryos. With its inherent benefits when compared to slow freezing, vitrification has been widely accepted worldwide and considering its widespread usage, numerous studies have evaluated the neonatal outcomes with encouraging results. Adding further credence to this technique, a recent retrospective study highlights that vitrified-warmed blastocyst transfers have equal live birth rates and enhanced neonatal outcomes in comparison to fresh transfers. The study findings are published in the journal, Fertility and Sterility.
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Posted in ART, Cryopreservation, Embryo Transfer, Embryology, Female Infertility, IVF, IVF Outcome, Infertility, PregnancyComments Off

NEWS: A novel closed vitrification device reported to be effective to vitrify cleavage and blastocyst stage embryos

Open vitrification devices for embryo cryopreservation allow direct contact between embryo samples and liquid nitrogen, posing a risk of infection or cross-contamination between specimens. The advent of closed vitrification devices has circumvented these risks associated with open vitrification devices. A recent study highlights that Rapid-iTM, a new closed vitrification device, serves as an excellent alternative to the current open vitrification devices to cryopreserve embryos at the cleavage as well as the blastocyst stage.
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NEWS: Better IVF outcomes reported with freeze all cycles compared to fresh embryo transfers

Growing evidence suggests frozen embryo transfer (FET) to be associated with fewer complications and better obstetric outcomes compared to fresh embryo transfer. A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the recent issue of Fertility and Sterility has reported improved IVF outcomes subsequent to the transfer of frozen-thawed, rather than fresh ET. Researchers consider enhanced embryo-endometrium synchronization during the cycle of endometrial preparation to be responsible for the boost in success rates.
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NEWS: New cryoprotectant-free, permeable capillary technique to help standardize sperm vitrification

NEWS: New cryoprotectant-free, permeable capillary technique to help standardize sperm vitrification

A team of researchers has developed a new technology for cryoprotectant-free, sperm vitrification, using capillaries that have standard cylindrical shape and fixed diameter. The promising technique will help to standardize the vitrification procedure with precise, quantifiable volumes of spermatozoa. Continue Reading

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Cryopreservation is Useful for Preserving Fertility in Hodgkin Lymphoma Patients

It has been observed that long-term survivors of lifesaving cancer therapies are at great risk of gonadal toxicity. Now, a study reviewing the impact of Hodgkin lymphoma therapy on male and female fertility, reiterates the usefulness and effectiveness of cryopreservation for fertility preservation in such patients. Continue Reading

Posted in ART, Cryopreservation, Drugs, Embryology, Female Infertility, Fertility, Fertility Preservation, IVF, IVF Outcome, Infertility, Male InfertilityComments Off

Study Reports Effective Blastocyst Cyropreservation Using Closed Blastocyst Vitrification System

A recent study has reported the effectiveness of a closed blastocyst vitrification (CBS-VIT) high security (HS) device for the cryopreservation of blastocyts from early cavitating to expanded blastocyst stage. Continue Reading

Posted in ART, Cryopreservation, Donors, Embryology, Ethics, ICSI, IVF, IVF Outcome, InfertilityComments Off

Higher Risk of Gestational Hypertensive Disorders with Donor Oocyte-derived Pregnancies

Oocyte donation (OD) is being increasingly advised, especially in couples or individuals with inheritable diseases, repeated IVF failures, and advanced maternal age. However, IVF cycles using donor oocytes have been associated with a high risk for obstetric complications, such as preterm labor, postpartum hemorrhage, and pregnancy induced hypertension (PIH). A new retrospective matched cohort study validates the increased risk of developing gestational hypertension and preeclampsia in pregnancies conceived using donor oocytes and donor cryopreserved-thawed embryos.

Peter C Klatsky from the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Women and Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, and coworkers, compared the risk of gestational hypertension and preeclampsia in women who underwent IVF cycles using autologous and donor oocytes. Donor oocyte recipients (n=77) with live births were matched with those undergoing autologous IVF (n=81) for age and plurality (singleton or twin).

The groups did not differ with respect to parity, age, and gestational type. In comparison to women undergoing autologous IVF, the ovum-donor recipients had
• substantially higher occurrence of preeclampsia (16.9% vs. 4.9%; P=0.02) and gestational hypertension (24.7% vs. 7.4%; P<0.01)
• greater probability for premature delivery (34% vs.19%) even after controlling for multiple gestation (OR=2.6; 95% CI=1.04-6.3)

It was also observed that pregnancies derived from cryopreserved embryos (n=16) were more vulnerable for hypertensive disorders (OR=5.0; 95% CI=1.2-20.5).

Earlier, Keegan et al (Fertility Sterility, 2007) conducted a retrospective anonymous questionnaire study to analyze and compare the rates of obstetric outcomes between OD recipients and IVF patients in the age group of either <35 or ≥40 years. They found that PIH rates were significantly higher in women using donated oocytes (<35 years, 42%; ≥40 years, 26%), when compared to those undergoing IVF (<35 years, 12%; ≥40 years, 14%). It was also seen that PIH rates among the twin pregnancies was higher in OD recipients than the IVF group.

In contrast, a more recent retrospective cohort study by Krieg et al (Fertility Sterility, 2008) found that rates of obstetric complications, such as gestational diabetes, hypertensive disorders in pregnancy, prematurity, and placental abnormalities, were comparable between women who conceived using donated and autologous oocytes in IVF. It was also demonstrated that the two groups did not show any significant difference with respect to infant birth weight and gestational age at the time of delivery.

Although the exact etiology of preeclampsia in oocyte donor cycles is yet to be established, altered or insufficient immunoprotective capability of the fetoplacental unit due to the brief exposure to non-maternal antigens is hypothesized as one of the reasons for its development.

A 2008 report by The Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada suggested the use of donated gametes in ART to be one of the first trimester risk markers for preeclampsia. With the current study results reaffirming the higher chances of hypertensive disorders in donor oocyte pregnancies, it is important to counsel such patients on the potential risks prior to treatment initiation.


1. Klatsky PC, Delaney SS, Caughey AB, et al. The Role of Embryonic Origin in Preeclampsia: A Comparison of Autologous In Vitro Fertilization and Ovum Donor Pregnancies. Obstet Gynecol. 2010 Dec;116(6):1387-1392.

2. Keegan DA, Krey LC, Chang HC, Noyes N. Increased risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension in young recipients of donated oocytes. Fertil Steril. 2007 Apr;87(4):776-781.

3. Krieg SA, Henne MB, Westphal LM. Obstetric outcomes in donor oocyte pregnancies compared with advanced maternal age in in vitro fertilization pregnancies. Fertil Steril. 2008 Jul;90(1):65-70.

4. Magee LA, Helewa M, Moutquin JM, et al. SOGC clinical practice guideline: diagnosis, evaluation, and management of the hypertensive disorders of pregnancy. JOGC. 2008 Mar;30(suppl 1):S1-S48.

Posted in ART, Cryopreservation, Donors, Embryology, Genetics, IVF, IVF Outcome0 Comments

Meta-analysis Provides Fresh Evidence on the Clinical Effectiveness of Elective Single Embryo Transfer

Meta-analysis Provides Fresh Evidence on the Clinical Effectiveness of Elective Single Embryo Transfer

Results from a new meta-analysis have reiterated the advantages and effectiveness of elective single embryo transfer (eSET), in comparison to double embryo transfer (DET), with a significant reduction in the multiple birth rate. Although lower pregnancy rates were noted with eSET during fresh IVF cycle when compared to DET, the study findings concluded that an additional frozen embryo transfer cycle will help negate this difference. The research article has been published in the recent issue of the British Medical Journal. Continue Reading

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Study Reiterates Efficacy of Long-term Liquid Nitrogen Storage for Preserving Sperm Motility

Study Reiterates Efficacy of Long-term Liquid Nitrogen Storage for Preserving Sperm Motility

Sperm banking has been recognized as an effective strategy to circumvent iatrogenic infertility and also retain the reproductive potential of adolescent and young adult males undergoing cancer therapy. However, the effect of long-term cryopreservation on the fertilization potential of sperm has been contentious. Now, a study performed by a group of Israeli researchers rules out any negative influence of prolonged storage in liquid nitrogen on the progressive motility concentration (PMC) of sperm. The results are published in the online issue of the journal Human Reproduction. Continue Reading

Posted in Cryopreservation, Embryology, Equipments, Featured, Fertility, Fertility Preservation, Infertility, Laboratory, Male Infertility, Media and Consumables, TechnologyComments Off

Vapor-phase Nitrogen System Superior to Traditional Liquid Nitrogen for Storing Vitrified Human Oocytes

Any therapeutic intervention in reproductive biology must ensure complete protection of biological materials against a wide range of microorganisms. Liquid nitrogen (LN) used for cryostorage collects particulate contaminants from the atmosphere or container surface over a period of time, which could be a potential source of pathogenic microbes, including herpes, papova, hepatitis, and vesicular stomatitis virus. A new study suggests that storage of vitrified oocytes using the vapor-phase nitrogen systems serve as a safer alternative to the traditional LN storage tank, as it avoids the risk of cross-contamination, apart from retaining the developmental potential of these oocytes. The findings of the prospective randomized trial have been published in the latest issue of Fertility and Sterility. Continue Reading

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