Theoretical and experimental basis of slow freezing

Lucia De Santis, Giovanni Coticchio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In human IVF, cryopreservation of oocytes has become an alternative to embryo storage. It has also shown enormous potential for oocyte donation, fertility preservation and animal biotechnology. Mouse oocytes have represented the elective model to develop oocyte cryopreservation in the human and over several decades their use has made possible the development of theoretical and empirical approaches. Progress in vitrification has overshadowed slow freezing to such an extent that it has been suggested that vitrification could soon become the exclusive cryopreservation choice in human IVF. However, recent studies have clearly indicated that human embryo slow freezing, a practice considered well established for decades, can be significantly improved by a simple empirical approach. Alternatively, recent and more advanced theoretical models can predict oocyte responses to the diverse factors characterizing an entire slow-freezing procedure, offering a global method for the improvement of current protocols. This gives credit to the notion that oocyte slow freezing still has considerable margins for improvement. In human IVF, cryopreservation of oocytes has become an alternative to embryo storage. It has also shown enormous potential for oocyte donation, fertility preservation and animal biotechnology. Mouse oocytes have represented the elective model to develop oocyte cryopreservation in the human and over several decades their use has made possible the development of theoretical and empirical approaches. Progress in vitrification has overshadowed slow freezing to such an extent that it has been suggested that vitrification could soon become the exclusive cryopreservation choice in human IVF. However, recent studies have clearly indicated that human embryo slow freezing, a practice considered well established for decades, can be significantly improved by a simple empirical approach. Alternatively, recent and more advanced theoretical models can predict oocyte responses to the diverse factors characterizing an entire slow freezing procedure, offering a global method for the improvement of current protocols. This gives credit to the notion that oocyte slow freezing still has considerable margins of improvement.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)125-132
Number of pages8
JournalReproductive BioMedicine Online
Volume22
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2011

Keywords

  • cryopreservation
  • cryoprotectants
  • fertility preservation
  • oocytes
  • slow freezing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Developmental Biology

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