The Foundation for Embryonic Competence is pleased to recognize Dr. Rachel S. Weinerman, a clinical assistant professor, reproductive endocrinology and infertility at University Hospitals Case Medical in Cleveland, for receiving the 2015 Scientific Program Prize Paper Award at the 71st Annual American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) conference in Baltimore, Maryland on October 21, 2015.
Her research, titled: The superovulated environment, independent of embryo vitrification, results in low birthweight following embryo transfer in a mouse model, was completed during her reproductive endocrinology fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania. Using a mouse model, she was able to isolate the impact of the superovulated environment from the embryo vitrification process on birth weight, finding the superovulated environment has a much greater effect on reducing fetal weight than vitrification.
“It is reassuring to know that embryo vitrification is safe as this allows us flexibility in IVF cycles to perform single embryo transfer (SET) to make IVF the safest it can be for our patients,” said researcher and award recipient, Weinerman.
Research shows that SET, when combined with comprehensive chromosome screening, yields similar pregnancy rates to the blinded transfer of two embryos. SET greatly reduces the risks associated with multiple deliveries, lowering the total cost of care, and is increasingly recognized as a best practice in IVF care.
“The findings from this research provide insight into the mechanism behind the observed trend of lower birth weight in babies born from fresh IVF cycles. This is an important finding that should be the basis of future research into the impact of the superovulated environment on birth outcomes,” said Weinerman.
“I am extremely proud to sponsor the research of reproductive endocrinology fellows, like Dr. Weinerman,” said Richard T. Scott Jr, MD, FACOG, HCLD, president of the FEC board of directors. “The high quality research she and other young investigators from around the country pursue is pushing our field forward.”
“I am very appreciative of the Foundation for Embryonic Competence for the funding that made this research possible,” said Weinerman. “I am also honored to have received the Scientific Program Prize Paper Award from the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. I believe this award highlights the importance of the study and the significance of the findings for understanding how best to optimize IVF outcomes.”
About the Foundation
The Foundation for Embryonic Competence (FEC) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing knowledge and enhancing outcomes in embryonic research, diagnosis and education. As the world’s preeminent center for the advancement of in vitro fertilization (IVF) diagnostics, research and education, the FEC offers exclusive embryonic screenings—IdentifySGD and SelectCCS—to aid in the selection of viable embryos prior to implantation in IVF. Proceeds from the FEC’s screening services are used to support research and medical education in the field of embryonic competence. For more information, please visit www.feclabs.org.