Saturday, May 13, 2017

What is test tube babies?

Test tube baby program is a popular name of In vitro fertilization (IVF)
procedures followed by embryo transfer (ET). It is a boon and very effective method to childless couples.

IVF is the most common type of assisted reproductive technology (ART) to help women become pregnant. The IVF procedure involves fertilizing an egg outside the body, in a laboratory dish, and then implanting it in a woman's uterus or fallopian tubes.

Actually, Test Tube Baby is not a baby developed in test tube. Only fertilization and cleavage of zygote occur in the laboratory. IVF is usually performed in the shallower containers called Petri dishes.

Steps of IVF are given below:

  • Removal of ovum from reproductive tract of a female (or donor).
  • Ovum is kept under aseptic conditions.
  • Fusion of sperm and ovum in a special culture medium in the laboratory to form zygote.
  • Zygote is stimulated to develop in vitro up to 32-celled stage.
  • Developing embryo is implanted on the endometrium of the uterus at 32-celled stage. 
Thus the woman becomes pregnant. The further developments are as in the case of normal pregnancy.

First attempt to produce a test tube baby was made by an Italian scientist Dr. Petrucci (1959). But this embryo survived for only 29 days. 

Louise Joy Brown with her parents
The world’s first test tube baby (Louise Joy Brown – a baby girl) was born to Lesley and Gilbert Brown (1978, July 26) in Oldham, England. Mrs. Brown had obstructed fallopian tubes. This experiment was successfully done by Dr. Patrick Steptoe & Dr. Robert Edwards.

India’s first test tube baby (Durga – a baby girl) was born in Calcutta on October 3rd, 1978.

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