In-vitro fertilization (IVF) is a process by which eggs with semen are fertilized in a fluid medium contained in a petri dish. The embryo is then transferred to a human womb for pregnancy. This process of assisted reproductive technology was subjected to controversies when it was first introduced in the late 1970s. Today, however, it is very common among the impotent couples.
Technology advancements have drastically improved the applications of IVF. It was estimated that nearly four million people across the globe were conceived through this technique. A large supply chain has developed in support of IVF labs and clinics.
IVF clinics continuously refine their techniques in order to minimize costs and increase pregnancy rates. The clinics employ cutting edge technology and include advanced micromanipulation devices, complex optical microscopes and cryogenic equipment.
Figure 1. ICSI Instrumentation installed with TS-150 Active Vibration Control System
- Optical Microscopy
IVF makes use of optical microscopes at different stages. Under normal lab conditions, these microscopes are subjected to minimal environmental vibration levels. However, under conditions when common fertilization methods fail owing to abnormal sperm morphology or low sperm count, scientists adopt a procedure called as intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
In this procedure, a single sperm is directly injected into the center of the egg cell. ICSI employs optical microscopes for manipulating small cells at high magnification levels. The micropipettes, microinjectors and micromanipulators employed in the process should remain at a constant distance from each other, and the cells are made stationary.
Therefore, this method is highly sensitive to environmental vibration levels, and the use of active vibration control systems for all ICSI workstations is recommended.
Temperature is another critical environmental factor to be controlled in the IVF lab. Living tissues and ex vivo cells respond to temperature fluctuations. They will be destroyed when exposed to high or low temperatures.
As the cost of extraction of sperms and eggs are too high, the IVF labs must undertake several measures to preserve them. Eventually, this requires a huge investment in specialized thawing baths and cryogenic equipment.
Figure 2. Fertility Associates Case Study
Herzan provides high performance environmental solutions for precision research instruments. They include acoustic enclosures, vibration isolation systems, Faraday cages, and site survey tools. Herzan specializes in supporting nanotechnology research, but also offers solutions for product testing, in-vitro fertilization, and many other applications.
Herzan understands that every application and environment is different, so it collaborates with customers to create comprehensive integrated solutions that satisfy their unique demands.
Herzan was founded in 1992 by Ann Scanlan in Orange County, California. Originally, Herzan was established as an American subsidiary of Herz Company Ltd., a Japanese company specializing in vibration control. The name Herzan comes from the amalgamation of 'Herz' and 'Ann'.
This information has been sourced, reviewed and adapted from materials provided by Herzan.
For more information on this source, please visit Herzan.