Gender selection can be controversial and there are widely-debated ethical concerns. For this reason, many countries only permit the service for medical reasons.
In countries that do allow gender selection for non-medical reasons, there are various different types of procedures used for gender selection. Most of these procedures involve separating the X and Y chromosome from the sperm, or selecting embryos with either male or female DNA. At New Life Mexico, we use Preimplantation Genetic Diagnoses (PGD) for gender selection as well as for medical screening.
Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) for gender selection allows medical professionals to asses early stage embryos (produced through in-vitro fertilization) to determine their sex before transferring them to the uterus.
This procedure is only performed by skilled, experienced medical professionals under a powerful microscope, using a glass needle to carefully penetrate the embryo’s outer covering and remove a single cell. Embryos of the desired sex are then selected and implanted into the mother. With a 99% accuracy rate, the service is popular among parents-to-be who wish to select the gender of their new baby.
Medically, our PGD services can also be used to screen for various genetic anomalies and increase the chance of carrying a healthy pregnancy to term. This makes PGD priceless for families at risk for passing certain genetic conditions to their children. The conditions tested with PGD are: aneuploidy, single gene disorders, and translocations.
Because many embryos may show chromosomal inconsistencies from cell to cell, PGD maintains known risks of false negative or false positive results and may not be fully accurate. PGD procedures may also reduce the overall success rate of IVF and may not be recommended for everyone, especially in cases where there are a limited number of embryos.
We highly recommend discussing your request for PGD with the follow up manager at the start of your program. Final decisions will be made once egg retrieval results are known and we can ensure the number of developing embryos is suitable for the procedure. At this point, a doctor will give a green light for the PGD procedure. In order for our parents-to-be to make an informed decision in cases where gender selection is unavoidable, we will inform you about the pros and cons of the procedure prior to beginning your program.
Sperm Microsort is a scientific procedure that will increase the chance for you and your loved one to have a child of the gender you desire. It’s unique, since it can be used prior to conception to separate the sperm into those that will mostly produce females or those that will mostly produce males.
To begin the gender selection process, a sperm sample is treated with a fluorescent dye. This dye attached itself to either the male (Y chromosome) or female (X chromosome) sperm. Flow cytometry (a technique for analyzing and sorting microscopic particles) is applied to the sample. Then, sperm is analyzed by a flow cytometer for the DNA content. The flow cytometer is a machine used in many labs to identify cell types based on their physical characteristics and the presence of specific stains to cell components. For PGD, it distinguishes between an X-bearing chromosome and Y-bearing chromosome. Cells with certain characteristics are then sent into a collection container.
The sorted sperm sample can be used with simple intrauterine insemination (IUI), In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) or Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection (ICSI). Normally, 50% of semen contains X bearing sperm and 50% Y bearing sperm. With the help of modern technology, we can obtain a sample that contains 88% X bearing sperm or 73% Y bearing sperm as determined by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Although a child of the desired gender cannot be guarantee, this is considered to be the most accurate, reliable method for detecting X and Y sperm. Microsort can also be used for family-balancing or preventing sex-linked genetic disorders, although information about the associated risks is still developing.