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POSTPARTUM

Assessing the effect of subfertility and its treatment on postpartum mental health

Two recently published studies have examined the effect of subfertility and its treatment on postpartum mental health; the results differ slightly but are broadly reassuring, say the authors.

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FROZEN EMBRYO TRANSFER

Added hypertensive risks for mother and baby in pregnancies from ‘programmed’ FET cycles

A new meta-analysis has confirmed risks found in other studies that pregnancies following frozen embryo transfers in a programmed cycle are associated with a higher risk of pre-eclampsia and other hypertensive disorders than found in natural cycle transfers. Absence of a corpus luteum may offer an explanation.

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SPERM SELECTION

Digging deeper: sperm selection with hyaluronic acid now linked to sperm DNA quality and reduced risk of miscarriage

Analysis of data from the 2019 HABSelect trial now finds that selection of sperm cells for ICSI based on their binding to hyaluronic acid was indeed associated with a real reduction in miscarriage rate, especially in women over 35. HA-based selection of sperm for ICSI could now be considered a part of the treatment plan for older female patients, say authors.

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PGT-P

Still doubts over embryo selection based on PGT for polygenic conditions

Advances in genomic technologies continue to expand the possibilities of PGT. In a preclinical research study recently published in Nature Medicine, scientists from Silicon Valley-based genetic testing companies have examined the potential of using PGT to predict complex polygenically inherited conditions in human embryos. While the authors present interesting data, Mina Popovic and Susana Chuva de Sousa Lopes from ESHRE’s SIG Stem Cells here report that the study raises profound medical, technical and ethical concerns.

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MISCARRIAGE

Why women with low ovarian reserve have no greater chance of miscarriage than those with normal ovarian reserve

A large study based on registry data suggests that the accelerated loss of oocytes seen in women with early ovarian ageing, while linked to decreased pregnancy and live birth rate, is not associated with a concomitant decline in oocyte quality as evident in pregnancy loss.

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WEBINAR: PGT-A

The challenges for preimplantation genetic testing for aneuploidy

A very well organised and well attended webinar series hosted by ESHRE on the ‘Essentials in Reproductive Medicine’ was completed in mid-May with a webinar focused on ‘Management of a PGT-A cycle’. Efthymia Constantinou, Junior Deputy of the SIG Reproductive Genetics, reports.

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MALE INFERTILITY

The ongoing challenges for male reproductive health

A Campus meeting in October organised by ESHRE’s SIG Andrology and the Male Reproductive Health Initiative will address the diagnostic and treatment gaps in male infertility and present a blueprint for improvement. Chris Barratt, a founding member of the MRHI, talks to Focus on Reproduction about the meeting and about the present status of male reproductive health.

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CAMPUS: EMBRYOLOGY

From the present to the future in the IVF lab

ESHRE’s second Campus meeting with ‘live’ participants post-lockdown was organised by the SIG Embryology. The three-day event pursued the analogy of ‘haute cuisine’ in the techniques, skills and service of the IVF laboratory.

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CAMPUS: LUTEAL PHASE

Shedding light on the ‘black box’: the luteal phase from end to end

The first Campus meeting to be held with ‘live’ participants for two years covered the luteal phase in ART, from progesterone measurement to luteal support to implantation and how to improve it, and finally to pregnancy outcome. As ever, there were many questions raised, but rarely answers supported by strong evidence.

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CAMPUS: ENDOMETRIOSIS

Examining the link between endometriosis, fertility and cancer

A Campus meeting in April focused on many of the recommendations in the newly updated ESHRE guideline on endometriosis, and included associations with cancer risk, pain and infertility, and the role of surgery in their management.

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