The term 'preimplantation' is used because testing is performed on embryos during the time before they would naturally implant into the uterus (usually after day 6). PGT-A is offered as a complement to a patient’s in vitro fertilisation (IVF) treatment.
PGT-A offered by Next Biosciences aims to improve pregnancy success rates and reduce the risk of miscarriage by avoiding the transfer of embryos with the incorrect number of chromosomes.
Humans typically have 23 pairs of chromosomes (46 in total) within almost every cell in our body. One chromosome of each pair comes from our mother, and the other from our father. The first chromosome pairs are labelled 1-22. The last pair of these chromosomes are the sex chromosomes, which determine if you are genetically male or genetically female. Individuals who are genetically female typically have two X chromosomes, while individuals who are genetically male typically have an X and a Y chromosome.
A change in the number of chromosomes can lead to a change in development. Embryos with the incorrect number of chromosomes are unlikely to lead to a successful pregnancy, may end in a miscarriage, or may result in the birth of a child with a genetic condition.
Embryos with the correct number of chromosomes are more likely to lead to a successful pregnancy.
Yes, scientific studies have shown that embryo biopsies do not add risk factors to the health of babies born after IVF.
If you are interested in PGT-A, talk to your fertility doctor to see if it's a good testing option for you, as PGT-A might not be right for everyone.
Pre-test genetic counselling is advised. Next Biosciences has an in-house genetic counsellor who can assist, or we can advise on other genetic counsellors who are experienced in PGT.
A genetic counselling session will ensure you fully understand the risks, benefits, and limitations of testing in your unique situation. While there are certain groups of patients that PGT-A will provide the most for, a genetic counsellor can help you better understand the possible outcomes of testing and whether there would be other benefits or limitations for you specifically.
Your embryos will remain safely at your fertility clinic throughout the process, where they are stored frozen. Only the biopsied samples are sent to the Next Biosciences laboratory.
Next Biosciences allows you the option to amplify DNA from each embryo sample and keep this stored in the Next Biosciences laboratory for possible future testing. There is a once off cost for doing so, no annual storage fees apply. We do not offer embryo storage as embryos are routinely vitrified (frozen) and stored at fertility clinics.
Provided we have received your signed Test Requisition Form (TRF) and payment for testing, results take 2 weeks from the day we receive the samples at the Next Biosciences laboratory. Next Biosciences will only release results to your doctor. Your doctor will then discuss the results with you.
There is a small risk of the biopsy procedure damaging the embryo, but this risk is minimal when performed by a suitably trained and experienced embryologist. The embryo will also need to be vitrified (frozen) while testing is underway, and then thawed prior to embryo transfer, which poses an additional but very small risk. You are encouraged to discuss these risks with your fertility clinic who will be able to share their own statistics with you.
No test can guarantee that a baby will not have any medical issues. PGT-A does not test for all genetic and non-genetic problems that may be present in a baby. Genetic counselling is recommended.
No, unfortunately medical aids do not currently cover PGT-A.