Embryo Implantation Enhancing Technology

April 13, 2017

At ReproMed we use new systems which are novel to Ireland but accepted as safe across the wider IVF world. These innovative services and new technologies put us ahead of other clinics in Ireland. However we also have seen increases in success where failure had existed before for women undergoing IVF technologies.

To explain two of these services I have used a recent news story to prompt this blog and there is a link in the science behind these products that allow us to employ these related technologies.

Embryo Implantation Enhancing Technology

One such product named Embryo Glue is in use at ReproMed to enhance our pregnancy rates during the IVF process. This new service in Ireland has led to many couples having success where previously they had been unsuccessful. The product enhances the interaction between molecules on the embryo surface interacting with molecular receptors in the uterus. These natural systems work together to also introduce and bind sperm to egg to facilitate egg penetration by the sperm cell and thus fertilise the egg.

Embryo Glue is employed just prior to the embryo transfer part of the IVF process. The embryos selected appropriate for transfer to the mother’s womb will be placed into this very sticky fluid, with a unique mixture of hyaluronic acid and albumin.

The solution also contains all nutrients and energy sources required for the optimal embryo conditions for embryo development. It contains high levels on implantation promoting molecules called Hyaluronan, which is normally present in the egg bearing follicles, fallopian tubes and uterus. These conditions are of high viscosity (very sticky).

We find very high levels naturally in the uterus on the day of implantation which decrease rapidly by the next day, indicating that hyaluronan is very important for implantation of the embryo into the uterine wall.

Pitching the Mature Sperm Increases ICSI scuccess rates

We also use a technology here at ReproMed called PICSI, which stands for a physiological Preselective Intra-Cytoplasmic Sperm Injection. This relies on the mature sperm having an acid in the cap of the head called hyaluronic acid. Natural successful penetration and fertilisation of an egg can only be achieved by a mature sperm binding to a chemical substance on the outside of the egg shell (zona pellucida surface of the human ovum).

The surface of the egg has Hyaluronan which allows the Hyaluronic acid stick to it, if the mature sperm has the biochemical capacity to do so. PICSI allows us to visualise which of the sperm can stick to a tiny drop of Hyaluronan which I have in the PICSI dish in my IVF laboratory. Once the mature sperm are identified I can perform ICSI in the same dish. This means PICSI helps the embryologist select out the most mature sperm in the IVF setting, promoting higher fertilisation rates and implantation rates.

News Report – The Guardian newspaper 25/05/2015

Embryologists led by Dr David Miller at the Leeds university’s School of Medicine, believe the substance called Hyaluronic Acid may help sperm stick to the human egg once it is released from the ovary. Dr Miller, said:

‘The way I describe the process is that a single sperm is similar to a kind of ‘mini-velcro’ – the sperm can be stuck down but it can also be removed with ease.’

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