Infertility Doctors Make Headway in Genetic Disease Detection

A press release last week announced what fertility doctors have known for years: progress is being made in understanding and treating genetic diseases.
Rapid progress in avoiding catastrophic inherited diseases -- boosted by research in genetic development that won the Nobel Prize for a North Carolina scientist last month -- is unfolding from a procedure called pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD).(Source: press release).
PGD is currently used in conjunction with in vitro fertilization in order to select the eggs which are most likely to offer success during the fertility treatments.
Commonly, PGD is used to prevent children from being born with autism, Down's syndrome, muscular dystrophy, cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia, Alzheimer's disease, and other disorders.(Source: Fertility ProRegistry.com).
PGD was first developed in the late 1980's. Since then, techniques have regularly improved and the number of genetic diseases that it can predict has increased rapidly. This allows for the potential use of fertility treatment findings in other areas of medicine to assist women in all stages of pregnancy in detecting and potentially treating genetic diseases.
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