CHR’s Research Affiliates Break a Record in in vitro Embryo Culture

The Rockefeller University group led by Ali Brivanlou, PhD, one of CHR’s research collaborators, received extensive media coverage on their work on long in vitro culture of human embryos. Previously, the longest scientists could grow a human embryo outside of the body was 9 days; Dr. Brivanlou’s team managed to culture embryos for 13 days, and were able to observe previously unknown features and mechanisms as the embryos developed.

In a Nature article describing this achievement, Dr. Gleicher provided the context of this achievement: about 50% of embryos that implant in the mothers’ uterus do not survive, and doctors don’t know why this is. Discoveries of the mechanisms involved in embryonic development can help clinicians understand the embryo implantation better, and develop therapeutic interventions in the future.


Norbert Gleicher, MD, leads CHR’s clinical and research efforts as Medical Director and Chief Scientist. A world-renowned reproductive endocrinologist, Dr. Gleicher has published hundreds of peer-reviewed papers and lectured globally while keeping an active clinical career focused on ovarian aging, immunological issues and other difficult cases of infertility.