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Current Genomics


ISSN (Print): 1389-2029
ISSN (Online): 1875-5488

Review Article

An Update on Non-invasive Approaches for Genetic Testing of the Preimplantation Embryo

Author(s): Georgia Kakourou*, Thalia Mamas, Christina Vrettou and Joanne Traeger-Synodinos

Volume 23, Issue 5, 2022

Published on: 17 October, 2022

Page: [337 - 352] Pages: 16

DOI: 10.2174/1389202923666220927111158

Price: $65


Preimplantation Genetic Testing (PGT) aims to reduce the chance of an affected pregnancy or improve success in an assisted reproduction cycle. Since the first established pregnancies in 1990, methodological approaches have greatly evolved, combined with significant advances in the embryological laboratory. The application of preimplantation testing has expanded, while the accuracy and reliability of monogenic and chromosomal analysis have improved. The procedure traditionally employs an invasive approach to assess the nucleic acid content of embryos. All biopsy procedures require high technical skill, and costly equipment, and may impact both the accuracy of genetic testing and embryo viability. To overcome these limitations, many researchers have focused on the analysis of cell-free DNA (cfDNA) at the preimplantation stage, sampled either from the blastocoel or embryo culture media, to determine the genetic status of the embryo non-invasively. Studies have assessed the origin of cfDNA and its application in non-invasive testing for monogenic disease and chromosomal aneuploidies. Herein, we discuss the state-of-the-art for modern non-invasive embryonic genetic material assessment in the context of PGT. The results are difficult to integrate due to numerous methodological differences between the studies, while further work is required to assess the suitability of cfDNA analysis for clinical application.

Keywords: Preimplantation genetic testing, embryo biopsy, cell-free DNA, embryo culture medium, blastocoel fluid, noninvasive PGT, blastocyst.

Graphical Abstract
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