PGT – Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis
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PGT – Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis

PGT – Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis

What is PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis?

Preimplantation genetic diagnosis is briefly referred to as PGT. It is a reproductive technology used with the IVF cycle to increase the potential for successful conception and childbirth. It is a genetic test performed on cells taken from embryos to help select the best embryo or embryos for pregnancy or to cure a genetic disease.

Why PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis?

PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis can be made in all IVF cycles. However, couples with increased risk for chromosomal abnormalities or specific genetic diseases are the ones who can benefit the most from this test. Women who have had miscarriages several times before are also included in this category.

Women over 38 years of age and men some with sperm abnormalities can also produce embryos with higher rates of chromosomal abnormalities. Furthermore, if a person carries the rearrangement of chromosomes, it can be determined by PGT which embryos have a normal amount of chromosomal material. PGT may indicate which embryos will be affected or whether there is a carrier for this disease when the chance of having an infant affected by the genetic disease is 25% or 50%.

How does PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis work?

Embryos are kept in the culture phase to be developed for 5 or 6 days after being formed in the laboratory. On the fifth day, a biopsy is performed on all appropriately developing embryos. A biopsy involves removing several cells, the cell layer of the embryo. While the genetic material inside the extracted cells is tested for abnormalities, embryos are stored. Decisions regarding the selection of embryos to be transferred to the uterus are made with the recommendation of the medical and genetic team.

Is PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis safe?

PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis has been applied for many years and thousands of live births have been obtained. It shows that PGT does not cause an increase in birth defects in the general population. Fewer pregnancies with chromosomal disorders can be expected in embryos where chromosomal microarray testing is performed, as most chromosomal disorders are identified before the transfer of embryos to the uterus. Removal of several cells of the early embryo does not alter the ability of this embryo to transform into a complete and normal pregnancy.

According to which criteria are embryos selected?

Embryos that have both a normal test result and an appropriate appearance can be transferred in the embryo transfer cycle. Although the morphology of the embryo helps in the selection of the best embryos for transfer, many embryos with significant chromosomal abnormalities are also known to have normal morphology. Therefore, PGT results help identify the best embryos for transfer to the uterus. The combination of normal genetic testing with normal physical appearance indicates the high probability of a healthy pregnancy. Twelve days after the embryo transfer, the woman takes a pregnancy test. A positive pregnancy test means that the embryo has been successfully implanted.

Is it possible to determine gender by the PGT method?

PGT is capable of revealing the chromosomal properties of an embryo. Since gender is a factor that can be detected from chromosomes, it is possible to say that PGT can determine gender. However, this procedure cannot be applied except in compulsory cases.

Can those who become pregnant by the PGT method have a miscarriage?

Embryos selected by PGT are of the highest quality chromosomes. The chances of this embryo becoming a healthy baby are quite high. Although the risk of miscarriage in PGT-induced pregnancies is very low, it would be incorrect to say that this risk is completely eliminated.

How many days does a PGT take?

PGT results can be obtained in approximately 1-2 days. The main factor in obtaining the test result quickly is that the embryos created need to be transferred to the uterus within a certain period of time.

How are PGT prices determined?

PGT is an important examination that should be applied in a sensitive process. Chromosome examinations performed on the embryo affect the price. PGT is priced according to the laboratory where the test will be performed and the procedures required by the IVF cycle.

It is a known fact that people have been seeking gender determination since the earliest times. It is seen that the interest shown by Chinese, Egyptian, and Greek cultures in gender determination dates back centuries. Medical studies on gender determination started after the 1600s. Throughout human history, it can be seen how long the efforts to gain dominance over the baby’s gender date back.

The method developed in the 1990s in terms of gender determination is still applied today. The main function of the procedure known as preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGT) is not to determine gender. However, it is a functional method that also offers the chance of achieving a preferred-gender outcome in pregnancy.

How is gender determination performed?

It is known that the gender of a baby is determined by the gender chromosome carried by the sperm. The female always transfers the X chromosome and the male always transfers the X or Y chromosome. In the combination of XX chromosomes, the gender of the baby will be female, and when XY is male. By decomposing the chromosomes in the embryo, it has become possible to select only the X or Y chromosome by the PGT method.

The steps applied in gender determination are as follows:

  • Egg cells are retrieved from the female and sperm samples are extracted from the male.
  • Male sperm and female eggs are fertilized in laboratory conditions.
  • 3 days after the fertilization process, embryos complete their development.
  • It examines the genetic structure of embryos to determine both genetic diseases and desired genders.
  • Healthy embryos of the desired gender are transferred to the woman.
  • If desired, other healthy embryos produced can be frozen and stored for future use.

The female becomes pregnant with the desired gender with this type of procedure.

Why is gender determination preferred?

Gender determination procedures are applied for 2 different purposes:

  1. Medical indications: In cases associated with gender-related disorders or severe genetic disorders that are more likely to occur in a specific gender,
  2. Family balance: It is applied in cases where the parents’ orientation towards gender is higher.

The gender determination method has become a highly discussed subject both scientifically and ethically since the first day it was developed. Therefore, as required by law, it is only applied in cases related to medical indications. It is not possible to make a gender determination in line with the wishes of the family.

Are gender determination methods safe?

The success rate of the gender determination method performed with PGT is 99%, and this figure is perfect for a medical study. Unless there is an error in laboratory tests, gender determination by the PGT method always yields the right result. However, there is a possibility of damage to the embryo in some cases since this diagnosis is made by biopsy, that is, by taking a piece of the embryo. Although this rate is very low, it should always be considered.

Is the gender determination performed only with IVF?

IVF treatment is necessary for embryologists to have access to embryos. PGT is performed only during an IVF cycle in which eggs are produced, retrieved from ovaries, and fertilized with sperm in the laboratory.

And what is this treatment? Let’s look at it together: What is IVF, how is it administered?

What is the cost of the gender determination method?

PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis can also be used to examine the chromosomal health of the embryo in a normal IVF cycle. However, this procedure is costly because it requires delicacy and precision. If PGT – preimplantation genetic diagnosis is desired, an additional fee is applied upon the charge of a standard IVF.