“According to Istat, based on data for the first half of 2022, about 380,000 babies will be born in our country throughout the year. This figure, which once again stands below 400,000 births, should be enough to stimulate debate and research regarding possible ways to reverse the trend. For this reason, every year we are happy to organize a meeting moment that allows professionals in the world of infertility to confront each other and grow, in order to offer infertile couples more and more opportunities to become parents.” This is stated by Andrea Borini, director of 9.baby, a network of centers specializing in Reproductive Medicine, now part of the GeneraLife group, which will chair the annual 9.baby GeneraLife Symposium, now in its 22nd year and scheduled to be held in Bologna, Italy, Sept. 22-24.
The PMA laboratory, where embryologists work, increasingly the beating heart of infertile couple treatment, is at the center of the event’s program, particularly through insights on automation, artificial intelligence applied to medically assisted reproduction, embryo culture techniques and the non-developing embryo. An entire session is devoted to pre-implantation diagnosis, a technique for investigating the chromosomal makeup of embryos resulting from IVF treatment. “Couples are starting the search for a baby later and later, but we know how negatively this impacts pregnancy opportunities. Reimplantation diagnosis reduces the so-called ‘time to pregnancy,’ avoiding transfers of embryos that would have no chance of starting a pregnancy, so we think it is important to study this technique more and more,” Borini adds.
In the IVF laboratory, it is possible to observe what happens in nature in the female body: the meeting of male and female gametes and the subsequent ‘fertilization’. This first ‘step’ of embryonic development does not always occur successfully, either in nature or in the laboratory: why? What gets ‘jammed’ and when? Can we infer the future path of the embryo from what happened at the moment the oocyte was fertilized by the sperm? These are the questions the group seeks to answer with the scientific studies it has been pursuing for 30 years.
Among the themes of the congress will also be guidelines and good practices to follow in the management of the infertile couple; embryo implantation and potential techniques facilitating ‘implantation itself will be discussed, but also the male factor, which is not always at the center of the discourse on PMA. Still, current trends in treatment choices and ovarian stimulation protocols will be discussed; a clinician and a reproductive surgeon will offer us a different look at the management of endometriosis, a widespread condition that affects 3 million women in Italy alone and frequently impacts the reproductive chances of sufferers and sometimes requires surgical treatment.
Finally, a session will be dedicated to the results of PMA treatments: defining the terms and criteria for evaluating the success of treatments is also important to give patients a tool to evaluate the various centers.