LIVINGSTON, N.J., Oct. 26, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- Survey-based study results to be published in the December issue of Reproductive BioMedicine Online, available online today, suggest children conceived via cytoplasmic transfer during in vitro fertilization (IVF) are in good physical and cognitive health more than a decade later. This is the first survey that describes parents' perception of the well-being of their children after the use of the experimental fertility procedure.
The survey-based study conducted by the Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science at Saint Barnabas and the ART Institute of Washington, follows up on research on cytoplasmic transfer that took place at Saint Barnabas Medical Center between 1996 and 2001. It is available at: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1472648316305569.
"The survey-based study is the first to explore the long-term impact of cytoplasmic transfer and the results appear to be positive," said Serena Chen, M.D., Director of the Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science at Saint Barnabas. "So far, only one child was informed by parents about the innovative science behind their conception. As more parents decide whether to tell their children, we may be able to conduct additional studies in the future."
Parents of 13 children whose ages ranged from 13-18 years were asked about the physical, emotional, mental and cognitive well-being of the children through an online questionnaire. The survey found parents had no concerns about the cognitive development of their children and felt their children were in good health. Key findings include:
- The majority of children (11/13) had excellent grades. The other two had good grades.
- No major health issues were found. Minor health issues among the children included allergies (7), minor vision (3) and skin (3) problems, mild asthma (2), and chronic migraine headaches (1). One boy was diagnosed with borderline attention deficit disorder (ADD). He now has episodes of depression. His family has a history of depression.
Limitations of the survey include the subjective nature of the survey, the lack of clinical follow-up, and the broad age range of the children.
"This procedure was a last resort for all of the women involved who had experienced the heartbreak of multiple IVF failures," added Jacques Cohen, Ph.D., an embryologist and co-author. "Not only did they successfully have babies after cytoplasmic transfer, all of their children seem healthy today."
How Cytoplasmic Transfer Works
Cytoplasm is the liquid portion of an egg that contains many different molecules and tiny parts called organelles. This includes mitochondria that generate energy for the cell. During cytoplasmic transfer, a small amount of cytoplasm from a fertile donor egg is injected into the egg of a woman who is trying to become pregnant through IVF. The egg is then fertilized with sperm and implanted in the uterus.
About the Saint Barnabas Medical Center Study
Between 1996 and 2001, Saint Barnabas Medical Center offered women who had experienced multiple IVF failures and poor in vitro embryo development the opportunity to try an experimental technique called cytoplasmic transfer. Thirty-three couples participated in the study and 14 became pregnant (37 attempts). One singleton pregnancy was lost before a fetal heartbeat could be detected. In total, 13 couples delivered 17 babies from cytoplasmic transfer all of which reported to be healthy at the time of delivery. The study was abandoned in June 2001, after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration required an Investigational New Drug (IND) application be filed to continue offering the procedure to patients. Due to a lack of funding, Saint Barnabas Medical Center chose not to pursue the IND.
About The Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science at Saint Barnabas
The Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science at Saint Barnabas (IRMS) is one of the nation's leading fertility centers, providing advanced infertility treatment in a caring and responsive environment. Treatment is individually designed for each patient, and may include intrauterine insemination (IUI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), ICSI, blastocyst transfer, preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD), egg or embryo cryopreservation, or egg donation. IRMS has locations in Livingston, Clark, Jersey City, Hackensack, Hoboken, East Windsor, Old Bridge, Long Branch and Westfield, N.J.
About The ART Institute of Washington
The ART Institute of Washington provides gold standard embryology services to military personnel at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Since 1999, the ART Institute has offered in vitro fertilization (IVF), intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), and intrauterine Insemination (IUI).
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SOURCE Institute for Reproductive Medicine and Science