Advancements in infertility treatments have been evolving furiously over the past thirty years. Here at Yinstill we regularly support couples who are taking advantage of scientific developments including IVF (in vitro fertilization), IUI (intrauterine insemination), ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection) and other pharmaceutical options including Clomiphene and Letrozole.
One of the newest developments in the world of fertility comes out of Toronto, and it is called Augment(sm). Augment(sm) has been specifically developed to aid women who have previously gone through IVF multiple times failing to get pregnant, or women who have poor embryo health and development. This procedure involves removing a woman’s own egg precursor cells (eggPC) from the thin ovarian lining and then removing the mitochondria from these eggPC(sm). These eggPC(sm) mitochondria are then placed in the mother’s older egg cells to supplement the existing mitochondria. As mitochondria produce ATP (which powers the cells) and regulate cell metabolism, this helps to re-energize the existing egg cells giving them a better chance of fertilization and survival as they develop to day 5 blastocysts and move through the fallopian tubes to implant in the uterus.
This is amazing. There has been one birth in Toronto using this method and currently seven other women are pregnant. Hopefully with further testing and successes we will begin to see this process in other clinics around the country. While this technology will not address genetic issues, giving the eggs a “new battery” may be the answer for many couples trying to conceive. Yay science!