The history of “test tube babies” goes back to the 1955 when in-vitro fertilization (IVF) started developing. The first IVF baby born in UK in 1978 under the supervision of IVF pioneer Sir Robert Edwards.

"Nothing is more special than a child" - Sir Robert Edwards after he won his Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2010.

Nowadays, infertility and consequent involuntary childlessness are a common medical problem affecting 10% of couples during their reproductive years. IVF is the most extensively used form of assisted reproduction techniques (ART), where oocytes (eggs) are fertilized and embryos cultured in vitro and then transferred to mother uterus. According to European statistics, almost a half a million of ART cycles are performed annually, resulting in the birth of 100,000 newborns, which account for nearly 5% of all babies in some countries.

Despite many technological improvements the overall pregnancy rate after infertility treatment using the most commonly practiced IVF remains only 30% per single cycle. The specific features of human reproduction include the high prevalence of diverse chromosomal pathologies in oocytes and early embryos, and significant dysregulation in gene expression in embryo and mother uterus endometrial tissue, both being the risk factors for implantation failure and decreased pregnancy rate after IVF.

An animated overview of IVF principle is available here.

05/03/2015 NEWS:

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