New technology identifies which embryos carry inherited diseases

A new type of pre-genetic testing called karyomapping helps identify which embryos have genes that will pass on inherited diseases such as Huntington’s, cystic fibrosis, and the BRCA cancer genes. Using this technology, embryos without the genes can be selected for transfer during an IVF cycle. Karyomapping takes just 3-4 weeks to provide results, as opposed to previous forms of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) which can take up to 6 months. The test also identifies known conditions that can affect implantation, ending in miscarriage.

For individuals and couples who have a known genetically inherited condition in their family such as haemophilia, and who want to avoid passing this condition on to their child(ren), karyomapping may provide a faster and more comprehensive result, and ultimately more peace of mind.

According to IVF Australia’s Medical Director, Associate Professor Peter Illingworth:

“It’s a major breakthrough in terms of convenience; it maps the DNA fingerprint between the two couples in each party’s DNA and uses that fingerprint to see which genes have been inherited by the embryos…that means a higher chance of the embryo implantation.”

Read more about PGD here.

Read more here.

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