Ovation News

Study Findings Rewrite the Rules for Embryo Selection for IVF

Ovation Fertility Newport Beach Study Sheds Light on Embryo Selection

Newport Beach, California October 6,  2016 – A study conducted by Ovation Fertility Newport Beach has provided new information about embryo selection for IVF. The study found that: (1) blastocysts that are slower to develop are not necessarily genetically inferior and (2) the quality of the outside cell layer is more important than the quality of the inner cell mass.

Fertility specialists grade embryos based in part on when the cells divide. It was once thought that embryos that developed into blastocysts on Day 6 were inferior to those that developed on Day 5. This study has shown that this isn’t necessarily true.

“Just because an embryo is slower growing doesn’t mean it’s genetically inferior,” says Dr. Mitchel Schiewe, Ovation Fertility Newport Beach research director.

The study also found that the quality of the outside cell layer is more important than the quality of the inner cell mass. The inner cell mass forms the fetus, while the outside cell layer, known as the trophectoderm, forms the placenta.

“In addition, our studies confirmed those in Europe showing that embryos with ‘A’ quality outside cells were more likely to implant and sustain the pregnancy, even from a Day 6 blastocyst,” says Dr. Schiewe. This shows the critical importance of a robust placenta in establishing a healthy pregnancy.

These findings will benefit all patients undergoing IVF, regardless of whether they undergo genetic screening. Fertility specialists now have a better understanding of what to look for in order to select the best embryos for IVF transfer.

These findings were presented at the World Congress of Human Reproductive Medicine in Berlin, Germany in 2015.

About Dr. Mitchel Schiewe

Dr. Schiewe is the high complexity lab director at Ovation Fertility Newport Beach and the scientific laboratory director at California Cryobank. Over the last three decades, he has helped IVF labs worldwide protect and transfer embryos in the blastocyst stage and improve pregnancy rates. Dr. Schiewe has published over 35 peer-reviewed papers and 70 abstracts. He also serves as a journal reviewer for Fertility and Sterility and Theriogenology. For more information about Dr. Schiewe and his work, please visit www.OvationFertility.com.


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