Essay on In Vitro Fertilization

816 WordsMay 7, 20124 Pages
Robert G. Edwards – Development of In Vitro Fertilization Robert G. Edwards was born on September 27, 1925 in Batley, Yorkshire, UK. Before he got into the medical field, he served in World War II before studying biology at the University of Wales in Bangor and Edinburgh University in Scotland. There, he received a PhD in 1955 with a thesis on embryonal development in mice. In 1958, he became a staff scientist at the National Institute for Medical Research in London and initiated his research on the human fertilization process. Five years later, he began his academic career in the reproductive physiology department was spent in Cambridge, UK, where he and gynecologist, Patrick Steptoe started the world’s first In Vitro…show more content…
In 1969, his efforts met with success when a human egg was fertilized in a test tube. In spite of his success, the fertilized egg did not develop more than a single cell division. He suspected that eggs had matures in the ovaries before they were removed for IVF would work better, and looked for different ways to obtain eggs in a safer way. While Steptoe used the laparoscope to remove eggs from the ovaries, Edwards put the eggs in cell culture and added sperm. Embryos started to from after the egg cells divided several times. Though the studies were promising, the Medical Research Council did not fund a continuation of the project. However, a private donation allowed the work to continue. By analyzing the patients’ hormone levels, they could determine the best time point for success. In 1977, Lesley and John Brown arrived at the clinic after nine years of trying to have a baby. IVF treatment was carried out and once the fertilized egg had developed into an embryo with eight cells, it was returned to Lesley Brown and on July 25, 1978, a healthy baby girl named Louise was born through C-section after a full-term pregnancy. It was then that IVF moved from a vision to reality and a new era in medicine begun. Gynecologists and cell biologists from different countries trained at the Bourn Hall Clinic and the original methods of IVF were
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