Center for Reproductive and Fetal Medicine

GENDER SELECTION IN EXOSOMIC FERTILIZATION

Finally we know the sex of the baby

GENDER SELECTION IN EXOSOMIC FERTILIZATION

Most parents would be happy to have an infant regardless of gender, boy or girl. However, for various reasons, some strongly prefer one gender over the other. We see this arise, for example, for cultural reasons or when a family already has many children of one gender and simply wants to achieve gender diversity.

This is not new. People tried to control the gender of their conceptions long before IVF came along. For example, some believe that intercourse in a certain way will control the gender of the offspring. This idea seems to be supported by the fact that the X (female) or Y (male) chromosome from the sperm determines the sex of the embryo (the egg or oocyte always carries an X chromosome). Because the Y chromosome is smaller and therefore lighter than the X chromosome, some believe that this allows sperm carrying the Y chromosome to swim faster. In practice, this difference is too small to matter, and such techniques do not produce substantially more infants of either sex than would otherwise be expected. Sex-selection techniques based on differences in sperm swimming speed are not very effective.

With IVF, however, we have the ability to examine the genetic makeup of an embryo. We can screen embryos in culture for chromosomally-carried diseases (single-gene defects), such as cystic fibrosis, for example. Only those embryos that do not have the disease-carrying gene are then transferred to the uterus. We can also check the number of chromosomes in each embryo and transfer only those with the normal number. It is hoped that this approach will increase IVF success rates per transfer by eliminating the transfer of non-viable embryos. These genetic tests are commonly known as PGD or PGS (preimplantation genetic diagnosis or screening).

PGD and PGS also reveal the sex of the embryo, allowing sex selection. Female fetuses have two X chromosomes (one from each parent) while male fetuses have one X chromosome from the mother and one Y chromosome from the father. Transferring only those embryos of one sex will greatly increase the chance that the resulting children will be of that sex. This is a very effective technique for gender selection.

To learn more about gender selection, contact the Center for Reproductive Medicine and Fetal Medicine – Dr. Alexander Trajan for a consultation.

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FREQUENT QUESTIONS

The association of IVF drugs with cancer risk is a major concern for women enrolled in these programs. But the plethora of bibliographic reports collected from credible scientific studies and published in reputable medical journals worldwide are reassuring and do not confirm this concern.

Of course not. In about a third of cases, infertility is due to the woman (female factor), while in a third of cases, it is due to the man (male factor). The remaining one-third is due to both (both men and women) or even to unknown factors.

The quantity and quality of a man's sperm can be affected by his health and lifestyle. Some factors that can reduce the quantity and / or quality of sperm are:

  • the alcohol
  • drugs
  • environmental toxins, including pesticides and lead
  • smoking
  • health problems
  • medicines
  • radiotherapy and chemotherapy
  • the age

Success rates vary at each IVF Center. Very important factors are also the age of the woman, the levels of her hormones and of course the sperm of the husband. Rates generally range from 45% or slightly higher for women up to 35 years old.

Infertility is defined as the failure to conceive after one year (or 6 months, if it is a woman over 35) with normal, regular sexual intercourse. In other words, when a year passes without the woman becoming pregnant, the couple should consult their doctor to determine the cause of the pregnancy and then treat it. We must all, however, be aware and not forget that the age factor is the most critical for female fertility and that the individualized approach of each couple is the "golden key" that solves the problem.

The number of treatment cycles a woman can undergo is not specified. It is certain that in our country there are high level obstetricians-gynecologists and organized infertility treatment centers, which offer impeccable medical services at this level. If there are correct indications (eg ovaries that respond to stimulation therapy, good quality endometrium, etc.) the success rate -especially with the use of newer techniques and biotechnological drugs, which show increased bioactivity compared to conventional drugs from urine- totals approximately 65%-70% after 4 cycles of treatment.

At the Center for Reproductive Medicine of Dr. Traianos we offer egg / sperm cryopreservation services for those who have a personal or medical reason and need this service. We use the most modern vitrification technique in the freezing of sperm and eggs.

The collection of eggs takes 10-15 minutes, it is not painful, it is done under intoxication and after the end of the process you return to your activities.

In general, experts agree that the fact that a couple has already had a child can be considered evidence that there is no infertility problem in the first place. It is like a small test that has been done and proves that they "succeeded" at least once. On the other hand, we need to know that in the meantime things may have changed and a problem may have arisen (eg the man may have had some inflammation that affects the quality of his sperm or has mediated something that affects female fertility: an inflammation, a gynecological surgery, an abortion, etc.). In any case, if a reasonable period of time (one year) passes and a couple can not achieve a pregnancy, then he should with the help of his doctor investigate if there has been a problem that causes infertility.