A Non-invasive Chromosome Screening Strategy for Prioritizing in vitro Fertilization Embryos for Implantation
Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology
Preimplantation genetic testing for aneuploidy (PGT-A) is widely used to select embryos having normal ploidy for transfer, but they require an invasive embryo biopsy procedure that may cause harm to the embryos and offspring. Therefore, a non-invasive approach to select embryos with normal ploidy for implantation is highly demanded. Non-invasive chromosome screening (NICS) methods have been proposed and applied in clinical practices, but a large-scale validation versus invasive preimplantation
... enetic testing (PGT) and the whole embryo ploidy has not yet been reported. In this study, by using the whole embryo as a gold standard, we validated NICS assay in a total of 265 donated human embryos and compared its performance with conventional trophectoderm (TE) biopsy PGT. The NICS assay showed promising performance, which is comparable to PGT-TE [sensitivity: 87.36 versus 89.66%; specificity: 80.28 versus 82.39%; negative predictive value (NPV): 91.2 versus 92.86%; positive predictive value (PPV): 73.08 versus 75.73%]. Additionally, NICS provides a scoring system for prioritizing embryo: embryos can be categorized into three groups with euploid prediction probabilities of 90.0, 27.8, and 72.2% for group euploid (A), aneuploid (B), and multiple abnormal chromosomes (MAC) (C), respectively. When an addition of TE assay is provided as a secondary validation, the accuracy significantly increases from 72.2 to 84.3% for group B and from 27.8 to 83.3% for group C. Our results suggest that NICS is a good rule in assay for identifying chromosomal normal embryos for transfer and might serve as a non-invasive approach for prioritizing embryos instead of preventing transfer of aneuploid and MAC embryos. It will help to ensure the safety of offspring and efficient utilization of embryos.