Advanced Science

As a patient with Hunter IVF, you’ll have access to the most advanced science in assisted reproductive technology thanks to our affiliation with IVFAustralia - breakthrough techniques to maximise your chance of pregnancy success.

These include Oosight Technology (PolScope), Digital High Magnification of Sperm, and Natural Killer Cell treatment.

Digital High Magnification of Sperm

Using high resolution, high magnification digital enlargement technology our scientists can enlarge images of sperm to over 7300x magnification compared to the standard 200-400x. Using defined sperm sizes and shape information, the scientist can select the most appropriate sperm to be injected into the egg.

This technique offers an increase in fertilisation and pregnancy rates; and a reduction in miscarriage rates in cases of severe male infertility.

Oosight Technology (PolScope)

PolScope uses polarised light to clearly see where the genetic material is stored in the egg.

This can help with the ICSI process, as the scientist performing the procedure can see where the genetic material is located and avoid injecting through the spindle. We are also currently performing a trial to assess the role this technique could play in predicting embryo development.

Natural Killer Cells

Natural Killer (NK) Cells are the main immune cell-type found in the uterus. Their numbers increase through the menstrual cycle to peak at the time of implantation of an embryo. If an embryo does implant, NK numbers increase further to 70% of all cells. Uterine NK numbers start to decrease at 20 weeks of pregnancy and are absent at the end of pregnancy.

Their prime role appears to be the early detection (surveillance) and elimination (killing) of cells that are not recognised as ‘self’, such as infections or cancer. Their killing capacity is also closely linked with cellular or type 1 immunity, so they can potentially be threatening to a developing pregnancy.

Current research into NK cells suggests they are involved in the success or failure of embryo implantation, causing both infertility and miscarriage. However, it should be emphasised that it is still unproven that NK cells actually cause reproductive failure.

If you are diagnosed with ‘high Natural Killer Cell activity’, immune suppressive therapy may be recommended. Progesterone, clexane, prednisolone and intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) are all safe to use during pregnancy. Your fertility specialist will carefully explain the side effects, and emphasise the experimental nature of the treatment.

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