Nanotech, artificial intelligence, wearables and biological engineering continue to change the way women today can conceive. Women who go the non-traditional route to have babies are consistently being featured in the news, from Kim Kardashian’s decision to use a surrogate to Senator Tammy Duckworth undergoing multiple rounds of IVF. Read on to see how these cutting-edge technologies have changed the fertility game.
- Artificial intelligence and predictive analytics
- Three-person embryos
- Uterus and penis transplants
Artificial intelligence and predictive analytics
Celmatix uses big data to treat infertility. Located in the heart of New York City’s Financial District, the company provides a web-based data analytics platform called Polaris to help optimize patient management and counseling. With Polaris, physicians are able to identify patients who are ready to start treatment, give patients access to data-driven personalized reports, and simplify communication across their clinical support team.
Life Whisperer is an AI program used to find embryos that will start a viable pregnancy. Using artificial intelligence, the company hopes to improve outcomes for couples attempting to conceive. Because finding the right embryo tends to be a manual and imprecise process, Life Whisperer aims to address this issue by using AI-driven image analysis.
Using three-person IVF, an embryo would be created with nuclear DNA from a woman with defective mitochondria, her partner’s DNA, and the healthy mitochondrial DNA from an egg donor. The UK’s Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) recently advised its government to make this technique legal in order to prevent children from obtaining mitochondrial disease. In the past, three-person embryos have been used to reverse the biological clock of older women.
A start-up company called Darwin Life is currently offering to “rejuvenate” eggs from women using Spindle Nuclear Transfer. According to Darwin Life’s website, it is a method of cloning. This procedure is currently illegal in the U.S.
Uterus and penis transplants
With the help of physicians at Baylor University Medical Center at Dallas, a woman born without a uterus recently gave birth to a baby of her own. The new mother received a uterus under a clinical trial being conducted at Baylor, thus allowing her to give birth.
Penile transplantations have begun to show promise, as the girlfriend of the first successful penis transplant recipient became pregnant back in 2015. Because there is a severe shortage of available donor organs, scientists have been attempting to grow a patient’s own organs. Organs such as the urinary bladder, urethra, and vagina have successfully been grown from a patient’s cells and transplanted before.
With the advent of advanced technologies emerging onto the market, couples are given a better chance than ever to start a family of their own. Hopefully, there will never again be a couple who has no hope of conceiving.