Australian scientists have developed a world-first technology that it hopes will give couples a greater chance of conceiving through IVF at a lower cost.
Developed by Monash University, the new syringe uses a 3D filter to detect viable sperm and improve sample quality by 65 percent.
The technology can isolate high-quality sperm in less than 15 minutes, according to scientists who have dubbed it the “biggest innovation in sperm selection technology in 30 years.”
The injection will lead to a higher success rate for couples who want to conceive through IVF, said lead researcher Dr. Resa Nosrati.
“The sperm syringe allows us to select sperm with over 65 percent improved DNA integrity and [make-up]and since DNA quality is directly related to the success of fertilization, we expect to improve outcomes from assisted reproductive technology (ART),” said Dr. Nosrati.
“This technology can help standardize and streamline the sperm selection process in fertility clinics.”
It is hoped that the new syringe would reduce the need for complex and invasive injection procedures, in which a single sperm is injected into an egg, in favor of artificial insemination directly into the uterus.
“Sperm selection is a crucial part of treating infertility, but traditional clinical methods of sperm selection have not changed in the last 30 years,” said Dr. Nosrati.
The syringe works by drawing a small sample of sperm into a chamber before passing it through a network of 560 tiny cylindrical micro-channels.
The high-quality sperm then swim through these micro-channels and are extracted, leaving the poor-quality swimmers behind.
This process takes less than 15 minutes and can recover more than 41 percent healthy sperm from the sample, according to Monash scientists.
According to PhD candidate Farin Yazdan Parast, who is conducting the research under the supervision of Dr.
“This provides an effective selection mechanism that outperforms both conventional clinical methods and other newer sperm selection technologies,” said Ms. Parast.
The sperm syringe has been patented and researchers are studying how the device can be commercialized for use in fertility clinics. Further clinical tests are also planned.
Originally posted as New Sperm Injection Bringing Hope to Couples Trying for a Baby