Update regarding Monash IVF Group’s Pre-implantation Genetic Testing on Embryos Program
Monash IVF Group has been at the forefront of technology to develop new treatments and diagnostic tools to assist its patients to become parents.
Monash IVF currently offers two types of pre-implantation genetic testing on embryos to detect genetic abnormalities (aneuploidy). These are cell biopsy PGT-A and cell-free PGT-A (also known as cell-free PGT-A or NI-PGT).
Cell-free PGT-A was introduced last year as an addition to the genetic testing program. It involved the testing of culture media around the embryo, and is less invasive than biopsy testing, which involves the removal of embryo cells.
As part of Monash IVF’s continued monitoring and refinement of clinical testing and protocols, we have decided to suspend cell-free PGT-A testing.
Why is the cell-free PGT-A test being suspended?
Monash IVF has reviewed the results of cell-free PGT-A tests undertaken in clinical practice to date and the following observations have been noted:
- The cell-free test is identifying normal (euploid) embryos without chromosome errors that previously could not be tested with biopsy. These euploid embryos have a higher chance of a pregnancy compared to embryos that have not been screened at all.
- Cell-free PGT-A and cell biopsy PGT-A are important tools to help rank embryos that are most likely to result in a pregnancy, thereby reducing the time to achieve a pregnancy.
- There are some new findings about cell-free PGT-A that are inconsistent with the original clinical trial results that need to be further understood. In preliminary investigations, the proportion of abnormal embryos classified (aneuploid) appears to be marginally higher than what was observed in the initial clinical trial, suggesting the cell-free testing has erred on the side of caution in its identifications.
It is not unusual for the results of new medical procedures in clinical practice to differ from the results of the clinical trial, but it is important to monitor and review any potential differences.
As transparency and reliability are of utmost importance in IVF, we believe it is in the best interests of patients to suspend the test while a review is being performed.
Further information for patients
It’s important to note that these findings have no bearing on embryos that were classified as euploid or inconclusive through cell-free PGT-A and transferred for a pregnancy. There is also a high likelihood that aneuploidy classification of embryos is correct.
We are currently contacting patients who have undergone cell-free PGT-A testing to advise them of the suspension.