Screening Technique Improves In Vitro Odds
Scientists can now safely analyze eggs' chances of conception
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 27, 2009 5:36 PM CST
Embryologist Ric Ross holds a dish with human embryos at the La Jolla IVF Clinic February 28, 2007 in La Jolla, California.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Scientists have discovered a way to greatly increase the chance of success for in vitro fertilizations, Time reports. Under current procedures, fresh eggs yield only a 25% success rate, necessitating multiple—and expensive—attempts. Many eggs hold chromosomal defects that make them incapable of conception, but it has, until now, been impossible to analyze an egg without destroying it.

A group of UK scientists has found a way to check an egg's viability by extracting something called the polar body, which contains a copy of its genetic code. The procedure will be expensive, about $2,750, but it could save money in the long run if cuts down on failed procedures that cost $5,000 apiece. Critics say it further blurs the line in how much we screen eggs for perfection.