Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

What to Do with Leftover Embryos in Fertility Clinics?

26.09.2008
The majority of infertility patients are in favor of using left-over embryos for stem cell research and would also support selling left-over embryos to other couples, according to a recent survey.

The survey is published in two related studies in the September issue of the journal Fertility and Sterility.

The researchers surveyed 1,350 women who presented for infertility at a large, university hospital-based fertility center in Illinois. The survey included 24 questions on patient demographics, obstetric and infertility history, and opinions about using extra embryos for stem cell research and selling extra embryos to other couples.

Assisted reproductive technology has resulted in the creation and cryopreservation of extra embryos at fertility centers across the country. It was estimated in 2002 that 396,526 embryos were in storage at U.S. fertility clinics, according to previously published research.

These embryos may be used for future pregnancy attempts, donated to other couples or agencies, given to researchers, or discarded.

Because infertility patients are the gatekeepers of these leftover embryos, it is important to understand their opinions, according to Dr. Tarun Jain, University of Illinois at Chicago assistant professor of reproductive endocrinology and infertility, clinical IVF director, and lead author of the study.

When asked if using leftover embryos for stem cell research should be allowed, 73 percent of the 636 respondents who stated a definitive opinion answered yes.

"Infertility patients, in general, are altruistic, and it makes sense that they would try to advance medicine and help others," said Jain.

African Americans and Hispanics were less likely to approve of using leftover embryos for stem cell research, compared with Caucasians. Patients younger than 30, Protestant, less wealthy and single were also less likely to support using leftover embryos for stem cell research.

The researchers also asked infertility patients if they would be willing to sell their extra embryos to other couples, a practice that is considered ethically unacceptable by the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.

There is an emerging demand from infertility patients who cannot conceive using their own oocytes, or eggs, to purchase left-over, pre-existing embryos because it is a more cost-effective option than using an egg donor, according to the authors.

When asked if selling leftover embryos to other couples should be allowed, 56 percent of the 588 respondents who stated a definitive opinion answered yes.

Hispanics were less likely to approve of selling extra embryos when compared with Caucasians, but all East Indian respondents approved of the practice. Women who had never been pregnant were also less likely to approve, according to the study.

The authors say this is the first survey to examine the opinions of a general infertility population related to the use of leftover embryos and to analyze the results based on the patients' sociodemographic and reproductive backgrounds.

"Given the potential for a significant increase in the commoditizing of spare embryos, medical societies and policy makers may need to pay close attention to this controversial area," conclude Jain and co-author Stacey Missmer from Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

For more information about reproductive endocrinology and infertility at the University of Illinois Medical Center at Chicago, visit http://www.uicivf.org

Sherri McGinnis González | Newswise Science News
Further information:
http://www.uic.edu
http://www.uicivf.org

Further reports about: Embryo Stem Stem cell Sterility couples embryos fertility infertility reproductive stem cell research

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells
22.08.2017 | National University Health System

nachricht Biochemical 'fingerprints' reveal diabetes progression
22.08.2017 | Umea University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Cholesterol-lowering drugs may fight infectious disease

22.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Meter-sized single-crystal graphene growth becomes possible

22.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Repairing damaged hearts with self-healing heart cells

22.08.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>