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July 12, 2018

The European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology Congress (ESHRE) was held in Barcelona, Spain on 1-4 July 2018 and, the IVF Centre of the Memorial Şişli Hospital participated to the congress with 3 oral presentations.

Prof. Dr. Semra Kahraman, the head of the IVF and Reproductive Genetics Centre, has given a presentation that answers the question “Is follicular size at oocyte pick-up (OPU) a predictor of blastocyst development? A study evaluating morphokinetic development and cumulus cell (CC) gene expression”. This study was supported by the Grant for Fertility Innovation (GFI, Merck) in 2014. The outcomes of the study were presented by Prof. Dr. Semra Kahraman on the first day of the congress and, over 1000 audiences were interested in the presentation. The study clarifies that the morphokinetic development of the embryos is influenced by follicular size and synchronicity of the cycle.

Indeed, the oocytes that developed from small follicles were more prone to have direct cleavages, to develop into slow-growing embryos from the 2 to the 8-cell stage and to stop their development by the 8-cell stage. Additionally, it was noticed that the oocytes taken from large follicles reach the blastocyst stage faster than the ones taken from small follicles. Moreover, cumulus cell gene expression was analyzed as the second step of the study. Even though the expressions were directly affected by the size of the follicles, there was no reliable evidence predicting neither that an oocyte will reach the blastocyst stage nor the quality of the blastocyst. By the end of the presentation, Prof. Dr. Semra Kahraman has been asked many questions about the study.

Many audiences have expressed interest in Prof. Dr. Semra Kahraman’s presentation and asked several questions about the study

In the industry symposium of the ESHRE congress, the Head of the Molecular Laboratory of Memorial Şişli IVF and Genetics Centre, Dr. Murat Çetinkaya, PhD, has also presented his study, “Simultaneous Detection of Chromosomal Aneuploidy and a Monogenic Disease by Next Generation Sequencing with Linkage Analysis”, as an invited speaker of the ThermoFisher symposium. During his presentation, Dr. Çetinkaya described his self-developed technique and algorithm, which allow for the simultaneous diagnosis of the chromosomal defects caused by aneuploidy and of the monogenic disease, when used with the next generation sequencing.

The last speaker representing Memorial Şişli IVF Centre at the ESHRE congress was Caroline Pirkevi Çetinkaya, PhD, in charge of the quality control of the IVF laboratory and embryologist. She has presented her research answering, “What is the genetic significance of blastomeres excluded from the formation of a morphologically normal blastocyst?”. According to this research, the cells, which are excluded from the blastocyst, and the embryo itself have genetically different structures. Thus, we can assume that it is highly likely that the blastocyst has a self-repair mechanism that supports the normalization of chromosomal anomalies. Also, it is stated that the aneuploidy rate of the blastocysts with excluded blastomeres is 10% higher than the blastocysts without blastomere separation.