Obesity and IVF, PGS 4.0 and more: July 2019 CHR VOICE Digest

Because of a study that was just published in a highly prestigious scientific journal, the lead article in this issue of the VOICE once again addresses what now is widely called preimplantation genetic testing for aneuploidy (PGT-A). The reason is simple: Considering the increasing pressure that has been building in opposition to the clinical utilization of the current version of PGT-A (under the old name preimplantation genetic screening, PGS 3.0), we have been predicting for some time to expect yet another (4th) version (PGS 4.0). This is now exactly what seems to be happening with above noted study, published by colleagues from Harvard University and a start-up company. As we predicted, PGS 4.0 would involve so-called “non-invasive” testing of embryos by switching from biopsying blastocyst stage embryos, to testing DNA in spent media from blastocyst-stage embryos. Though avoiding embryo biopsy, theoretically, offers a significant potential advantage, avoiding damage to embryos from a biopsy, this study, unfortunately, is terminally flawed, and we in our article in detail explain why.

This is once again the VOICE’s final issues for the 2018/2019 academic year. Unless circumstances call for immediate commentaries, this newsletter will not appear during the summer break, with the next issue being published in early September. We, therefore, want to take the opportunity to wish all of our readers, whether our past or present patients, colleagues or other recipients of the VOICE, a wonderful summer.

In this issue of the VOICE, we cover:

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.