Download the Free Unbound MEDLINE PubMed App to your smartphone or tablet.
Available for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android.
Assisted reproductive technologies [keywords]
- Somos muchos (we are so many): population politics and "reproductive othering" in mexican fertility clinics. [Journal Article]
- Med Anthropol Q 2013 Mar; 27(1):121-38.
Although Mexican state officials have long attributed Mexico's "overpopulation problem" to its "high" fertility rate, that rate is almost at replacement level today. Nevertheless, anxieties about overpopulation rooted in reproduction persist. Based on my ethnographic fieldwork in Mexico City fertility clinics, this article examines how overpopulation anxieties affect infertile women as they use assisted reproductive technologies (ARTs) to try to conceive children. I examine how these women attempt to justify their seemingly out-of-place use of ARTs in this "overpopulated" context by evoking discourses of "reproductive othering." Through these discourses they lay claim to a whiter, worthier status than racialized Others on the basis of their purported reproductive practices. I contend that their discourses reveal that infertility and its care are potent sites for the local production and reproduction of personhood, parenthood, and citizenship.
- Sperm viral infection and male infertility: focus on HBV, HCV, HIV, HPV, HSV, HCMV, and AAV. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Reprod Immunol 2013 May 10.
Chronic viral infections can infect sperm and are considered a risk factor in male infertility. Recent studies have shown that the presence of HIV, HBV or HCV in semen impairs sperm parameters, DNA integrity, and in particular reduces forward motility. In contrast, very little is known about semen infection with human papillomaviruses (HPV), herpesviruses (HSV), cytomegalovirus (HCMV), and adeno-associated virus (AAV). At present, EU directives for the viral screening of couples undergoing assisted reproduction techniques require only the evaluation of HIV, HBV, and HCV. However, growing evidence suggests that HPV, HSV, and HCMV might play a major role in male infertility and it has been demonstrated that HPV semen infection has a negative influence on sperm parameters, fertilization, and the abortion rate. Besides the risk of horizontal or vertical transmission, the negative impact of any viral sperm infection on male reproductive function seems to be dramatic. In addition, treatment with antiviral and antiretroviral therapies may further affect sperm parameters. In this review we attempted to focus on the interactions between defined sperm viral infections and their association with male fertility disorders. All viruses considered in this article have a potentially negative effect on male reproductive function and dangerous infections can be transmitted to partners and newborns. In light of this evidence, we suggest performing targeted sperm washing procedures for each sperm infection and to strongly consider screening male patients seeking fertility for HPV, HSV, and HCMV, both to avoid viral transmission and to improve assisted or even spontaneous fertility outcome.
- Research Resource: Small RNA-seq of human granulosa cells reveals miRNAs in FSHR and aromatase genes. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Endocrinol 2013 May 9.
The granulosa cells in the mammalian ovarian follicle respond to gonadotropin signalling and are involved in the processes of folliculogenesis and oocyte maturation. Studies on gene expression and regulation in human granulosa cells are of interest due to their potential for estimating the oocyte viability and IVF success. However, the post-transcriptional gene expression studies on microRNA (miRNA) level in the human ovary have been scarce. The current study determined the miRNA profile by deep sequencing of the two intrafollicular somatic cell types: mural and cumulus granulosa cells (MGC and CGC, respectively) isolated from women undergoing controlled ovarian stimulation and in vitro fertilization. Altogether 936 annotated and nine novel miRNAs were identified. Ninety of the annotated miRNAs were differentially expressed between MGC and CGC. Bioinformatic prediction revealed that TGFβ, ErbB signalling and heparan sulphate biosynthesis were targeted by miRNAs in both granulosa cell populations, while extracellular matrix remodelling, Wnt and neurotrophin signalling pathways were enriched among miRNA targets in MGC. Two of the novel miRNAs found were of intronic origin: one from the aromatase and the other from the FSH receptor gene. The latter miRNA was predicted to target the activin signalling pathway. In addition to revealing the genome-wide miRNA signature in human granulosa cells, our results suggest that post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression by miRNAs could play an important role in the modification of gonadotropin signalling. miRNA expression studies could therefore lead to new prognostic markers in assisted reproductive technologies.
- Persistence and intergenerational transmission of differentially expressed genes in the testes of intracytoplasmic sperm injection conceived mice. [Journal Article]
- J Zhejiang Univ Sci B 2013 May; 14(5):372-81.
Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is commonly used to solve male infertility problems. Previous studies showed that early environmental exposure of an embryo may influence postnatal development. To detect whether ICSI operations affect the reproductive health of a male or his offspring, we established assisted reproductive technologies (ART) conceived mouse models, and analyzed gene expression profiles in the testes of both ICSI and naturally conceived (NC) newborn F1 mice using micro-array analysis. Among the differentially expressed genes, we focused on the expression of eight male reproduction-related genes. Quantitative real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) was used to analyze the expression of these genes in the testes of both adult and old F1 generation mice and adult F2 generation mice. Our results showed that down-regulated and somatic cell-expressed genes in newborn mice retained their differential expression patterns in adult and old F1 generation individuals, implying the persistence and fetal origin of the alteration in the expression of these genes. The intergenerational transmission of differential gene expression was observed, but most changes tended to be reduced in adult F2 generations. Controlled ovarian hyperstimulation (COH) and in vitro fertilization (IVF) mice models were added to explore the precise factors contributing to the differences in ICSI offspring. The data demonstrated that superovulation, in vitro culture, and mechanical stimulation involved in ICSI had a cumulative effect on the differential expression of these male reproductive genes.
- Long-term follow-up of children conceived through assisted reproductive technology. [Journal Article]
- J Zhejiang Univ Sci B 2013 May; 14(5):359-71.
Children conceived via assisted reproductive technologies (ART) are nowadays a substantial proportion of the population. It is important to follow up these children and evaluate whether they have elevated health risks compared to naturally conceived (NC) children. In recent years there has been a lot of work in this field. This review will summarize what is known about the health of ART-conceived children, encompassing neonatal outcomes, birth defects, growth and gonadal developments, physical health, neurological and neurodevelopmental outcomes, psychosocial developments, risk for cancer, and epigenetic abnormalities. Most of the children conceived after ART are normal. However, there is increasing evidence that ART-conceived children are at higher risk of poor perinatal outcome, birth defects, and epigenetic disorders, and the mechanism(s) leading to these changes have not been elucidated. Continuous follow-up of children after ART is of great importance as they progress through adolescence into adulthood, and new ART techniques are constantly being introduced.
- GnRH antagonists in assisted reproductive techniques: a review on the Italian experience. [Journal Article]
- Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2013 Apr; 17(7):853-73.
Current Controlled Ovarian Stimulation (COH) for Assisted Reproductive Techniques (ART) pursues three main objectives: hypophyseal activity suppression, multiple follicle growth stimulation, and ovulation induction. By suppressing hypophyseal activity, it is possible to prevent untimely LH surge and allow the appropriate development of the leading follicle. The classical GnRH agonist long protocol is the most widely used in COH for ART. However, an alternative regimen based on GnRH antagonist has been recently introduced in clinical practice. As competitive antagonists, these drugs display an immediate and quickly reversible effect and they avoid hormonal withdrawal side effects. Moreover, this protocol shows undeniable advantages, including the shorter duration of the treatment, the lower amount of gonadotropin required, the shorter hormonal and ultrasound monitoring of patients, milder physical and emotional stress, and a lower risk of Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS). The use of GnRH antagonists was traditionally restricted to selected patients, as "poor responders" and women at high-risk of developing OHSS such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) and patients who had previously experienced OHSS. These findings could prompt a trend to change from the standard agonist protocol to the antagonist protocol in all categories of patients. This review provides a comprehensive overview of the use of GnRH antagonist protocols applied both to IVF techniques and to IUI procedures in the Italian experience.
- A technique for facile and precise transfer of mouse embryos. [Journal Article]
- Avicenna J Med Biotechnol 2013 Jan; 5(1):62-5.
Successful Embryo Transfer (ET) technique is a fateful step of all efforts to achieve live births from in vitro produced embryos in assisted reproductive techniques or in knockout, transgenic or cloned animal projects. Small reproductive tract of mice and limitation of current techniques may not well satisfy the requirements for mass production of genetically modified mice. Genetic abnormalities of embryos, receptivity and uterine contractions, expulsion of embryos, blood, mucus or bacterial contamination on the transfer pipette tip, technical problems and even animal strain may affect embryo transfer outcome.In this study, two techniques of embryo transfer in mice were compared. In conventional technique the oviduct wall was punctured with a 30-gauge needle and the loaded Pasteur pipette with embryos and medium was inserted into the hole. In new technique, embryos that were loaded in modified micropipette with minimal medium were transferred directly to the oviduct by manual piston micro-pump easily. Embryo viability was evaluated considering the percentage of live healthy newborns.Results of the two techniques were compared by t-test within the NPAR1WAY procedure of SAS software (ver. 9.2). The average live birth rates in the novel methods was significantly higher (42.4%) than the conventional method (21.7%, p<0.05).In conclusion, using new embryo transfer technique improved birth rate by preventing embryos expulsion from the oviduct, saving time and easy transfer of embryos with minimum volume of medium.
- Chromatin and cytoplasmic characteristics of equine oocytes recovered by transvaginal ultrasound-guided follicle aspiration are influenced by the developmental stage of their follicle of origin. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Theriogenology 2013 Apr 24.
Dynamic follicular changes occur during the equine estrus cycle, but little is known about their impact on the properties of recovered oocytes. The aim of this study was to characterize the cytoplasmic and chromatin status of equine oocytes in relation to the time of recovery during the follicle wave. Transvaginal ultrasound-guided follicle aspiration was performed two times in relation to the follicle wave: estrus-subordinate, from the subordinate follicles of mares in estrus, 24 hours after human chorionic gonadotropin stimulation of a dominant preovulatory follicle, and new-wave, from the follicles of the subsequent induced follicular wave, at the time of dominant follicle divergence (largest follicle 23 mm diameter). A total of 1011 follicles were aspirated. The oocyte recovery rate in the new-wave group was significantly lower than that for the estrus-subordinate group (12% vs. 26%, respectively); this was associated with a significantly higher proportion of oocytes with compact cumuli (44% vs. 27%, respectively). Estradiol concentrations were markedly higher in follicular fluid from new-wave follicles (885.6 ± 123.2 ng/mL vs. 54.3 ± 18.9 ng/mL, for estrus-subordinate; P < 0.001), indicating greater viability. Aspiration group did not affect glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase activity in recovered oocytes. Fibrillar (more juvenile) chromatin was more prevalent in new-wave oocytes, whereas estrus-subordinate oocytes showed more condensed chromatin or resumption of meiosis (P < 0.05). Mitochondrial activity was higher in oocytes with expanded cumuli in the new-wave group, but not in the estrus-subordinate group. In conclusion, our results clearly showed that the time of aspiration in relation to the follicle wave is associated with significant differences in follicle status and oocyte characteristics: new-wave oocytes were from a more viable follicle population and had more juvenile chromatin and cytoplasmic characteristics, whereas estrus-subordinate oocytes were from a more atretic follicle population and exhibited signs of atresia-related acquisition of meiotic and cytoplasmic competence. These findings will help in effective scheduling of oocyte recovery for equine-assisted reproduction techniques.
- Genetic Counseling Services and Development of Training Programs in Malaysia. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Genet Couns 2013 Apr 25.
Genetic counseling service is urgently required in developing countries. In Malaysia, the first medical genetic service was introduced in 1994 at one of the main teaching hospitals in Kuala Lumpur. Two decades later, the medical genetic services have improved with the availability of genetic counseling, genetic testing and diagnosis, for both paediatric conditions and adult-onset inherited conditions, at four main centers of medical genetic services in Malaysia. Prenatal diagnosis services and assisted reproductive technologies are available at tertiary centres and private medical facilities. Positive developments include governmental recognition of Clinical Genetics as a subspecialty, increased funding for genetics services, development of medical ethics guidelines, and establishment of support groups. However, the country lacked qualified genetic counselors. Proposals were presented to policy-makers to develop genetic counseling courses. Challenges encountered included limited resources and public awareness, ethical dilemmas such as religious and social issues and inadequate genetic health professionals especially genetic counselors.
- High prevalence of genetic abnormalities in Middle Eastern patients with idiopathic non-obstructive azoospermia. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- J Assist Reprod Genet 2013 Apr 25.