Artificial intelligence, or AI, is all around us, in voice assistant software like Siri or Alexa, in the face recognition system used to unlock your phone and even built into the social media platforms you browse daily. We're living in a new age of technology, with new discoveries made every day that can be used to improve our quality of life. But did you know AI technology can be used to monitor your embryos as they develop? At Manchester Fertility, our embryologists use a specialist time-lapse culture incubator in conjunction with AI software to assist them as they grade your embryos and choose which is most suitable for treatment.
EmbryoScope – What is a time-lapse culture incubator?
An EmbryoScope is a state-of-the-art time-lapse culture incubator that we use in our labs. It not only mimics the physiological conditions in a woman's body as closely as possible to provide an optimal environment for the embryo - as a traditional incubator does - but it also allows us to monitor an embryo throughout the stages of cell division through the use of time-lapse imaging.
The EmbryoScope incubators are fitted with high-resolution cameras that take images at regular intervals as the embryo grows, after which a time-lapse video is created. This allows our team to observe when and how cell division occurs and assess the progression of the embryo development. The time-lapse video footage can be fast-forwarded and rewound, and even zoomed in and out for closer inspection, all without the embryologist removing the embryo from the incubator. This footage is then analysed using an AI software called iDAScore.
iDAScore – What is it and what does it do?
iDAScore is an AI software that automatically assigns a rank to the embryos based on analysis of the time-lapse footage from the EmbryoScope videos. The iDAScore software was developed by analysing embryo quality on hundreds of thousands of embryos. iDAScore takes into account the entire embryo developmental history and determines the quality of your embryo based on the AI’s opinion. Based on that data, it then produces a rank for your embryos and decides which has the best chance of implantation.
Our highly-skilled embryologists have vast experience in grading and selecting embryos to help you achieve successful treatment. During the embryo selection process, the embryologist will assess the iDAScore data, along with the grades they personally assign. The iDAScore ranks provide additional information to the embryologist to aid in their decision of selecting the embryo that will give the best chance in that cycle, but also affirms the embryologist of embryos that may be suitable for freezing for subsequent cycles.
Are there any risks to iDAScore?
There are no inherent risks to iDAScore, in fact, it helps our team ensure the embryo used for your treatment is of the highest possible quality.
What are the benefits of iDAScore?
As our embryologists can now examine your embryos at all stages of development we can better identify when an embryo shouldn’t be used or when an embryo is not suitable for use in your treatment which can reduce the risk of a possible failed cycle. In the rare case of a failed cycle or if there are no suitable embryos for transfer our team of dedicated fertility specialists will work with you to identify the best way forward.
What does this mean for my treatment?
As a leading provider of fertility treatments, such as IVF, we are confident not only in the abilities of our incredible team but also in our state-of-the-art facilities and processes.
Rest assured that when you choose Manchester Fertility as your treatment provider, you will have access to our bespoke treatment plans, exceptional team and state-of-the-art facilities, and new technologies that seek to maximise your chances of successful treatment.
HFEA, the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Authority, investigates treatment add-ons regularly and assigns them a level with a traffic light system. The traffic-light rated list of add-ons consists of three colours that indicate whether the evidence, in the form of high-quality RCTs, shows that a treatment add-on is effective at improving the chances of having a baby for someone undergoing fertility treatment. The HFEA considers time-lapse imaging an AMBER add-on. Visit the HFEA website today for more information.
Are you considering fertility treatment such as IVF? Book a free non-medical 1-2-1 discovery appointment where you can discuss our different treatment options, the treatment process, and the support you will receive as one of our patients. Our New Patient Advisor team is always happy to answer any questions or offer advice. You can call us on 0161 300 2737 or even request a call back at a convenient time.
Last updated: 16th November 2022