All Publications

  • Are blastocyst aneuploidy rates different between fertile and infertile populations? JOURNAL OF ASSISTED REPRODUCTION AND GENETICS Kort, J. D., McCoy, R. C., Demko, Z., Lathi, R. B. 2018; 35 (3): 403–8


    This study aimed to determine if patients with infertility or recurrent pregnancy loss have higher rates of embryo aneuploidy than fertile controls.This was a retrospective review of all pre-implantation genetic screening (PGS) cases processed by a single reference lab prior to March 2014 after a blastocyst biopsy. Cases were excluded if no indication for PGS was designated or patients were translocation carriers. The fertile control group consisted of patients undergoing IVF with PGS for sex selection only. The comparison cohorts included those with recurrent pregnancy loss, male factor infertility, unexplained infertility, prior failed IVF, or previous aneuploid conceptions. A quasi-binomial regression model was used to assess the relationship between the dependent variable, aneuploidy rate and the independent variables, maternal age and reason for PGS. A quasi-Poisson regression model was used to evaluate the relationship between similar independent variables and the number of blastocyst biopsies per case.The initial study population consisted of 3378 IVF-PGS cycles and 18,387 analyzed trophectoderm samples. Controlling for maternal age, we observed an increased rate of aneuploidy among patients with recurrent pregnancy loss (OR 1.330, p < 0.001), prior aneuploid pregnancy (OR 1.439, p < 0.001), or previous failed IVF cycles (OR 1.356, p = 0.0012) compared to fertile controls. Patients with unexplained and male factor infertility did not have a significantly different aneuploidy rate than controls (p > 0.05). The increase in aneuploidy in patients with RPL and prior IVF failure was driven by both an increase in meiotic (OR 1.488 and 1.508, p < 0.05) and mitotic errors (1.269 and 1.393, p < 0.05) relative to fertile controls, while patients with prior aneuploid pregnancies had only an increased risk of meiotic error aneuploidies (OR 1.650, p < 0.05).Patients with recurrent pregnancy loss, previous IVF failures, and prior aneuploid pregnancies have a significantly higher, age-independent, aneuploidy rate compared to patients without infertility.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10815-017-1060-x

    View details for Web of Science ID 000430307100006

    View details for PubMedID 29063503

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC5904052

  • Comparison of cytogenetics and molecular karyotyping for chromosome testing of miscarriage specimens FERTILITY AND STERILITY Shah, M. S., Cinnioglu, C., Maisenbacher, M., Comstock, I., Kort, J., Lathi, R. B. 2017; 107 (4)


    To compare chromosome testing of miscarriage specimens between traditional cytogenetic analysis and molecular karyotyping using single nucleotide polymorphism microarrays (SNP) and array comparative genomic hybridization (aCGH).Prospective blinded cohort study.University-based practice.Women undergoing dilation and curettage for first-trimester miscarriage between March 2014 and December 2015.None.Chromosome analysis from chorionic villi separated equally and submitted for cytogenetics, SNP microarray, and aCGH testing.Sixty samples were analyzed, of which 47 (78%) were chromosomally abnormal. A correct call was defined when a result was concordant with at least one other testing platform. The correct call rate was 85%, 93%, and 85% using cytogenetics, SNP array, and aCGH, respectively. We found a 33% overall discordance rate between results. Discordances were due to maternal cell contamination, balanced chromosome rearrangements, polyploidy, and placental mosaicism. Mosaicism was detected in 18% of all samples. Growth failure occurred in four samples sent to cytogenetics, of which three were chromosomally abnormal by molecular testing.This study demonstrates the many technical limitations of the three testing modalities. Our rates of maternal cell contamination were low, but it is important to note that this is a commonly reported limitation of cytogenetics. Given the similar overall performance of the three testing modalities, providers may choose a method based on individual availability and consideration of limitations as it applies to each clinical scenario. The unexpected high rate of placental mosaicism warrants further investigation.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2017.01.022

    View details for Web of Science ID 000400459100034

    View details for PubMedID 28283267

  • Warm reception for frozen embryos, but should a hot trend still be kept on ice? FERTILITY AND STERILITY Kort, J. D., Lathi, R. B., Baker, V. 2017; 107 (3): 575-576
  • Biomechanics and developmental potential of oocytes and embryos. Fertility and sterility Kort, J., Behr, B. 2017; 108 (5): 738–41


    The high incidence of multiple embryo transfers is evidence of the need for better methods of embryo selection. Additionally, methods to determine the reproductive competence of unfertilized oocytes are critically needed to inform the growing population of patients undergoing fertility preservation. The ideal method of oocyte and embryo selection would be noninvasive, inexpensive, and able to be incorporated into embryology workflow with minimal disruption. Methods to assess the biomechanical properties of cells offer many of these traits, and there is a growing body of evidence in multiple cell types demonstrating the biomechanical properties of cells are reflective of a cell's intrinsic health. The associations with these properties are not mere coincidence, as many of the biomechanical properties are critical to cellular function. The biomechanical properties of oocytes and embryos undergo a dynamic, characteristic transformation from oocyte maturation through blastocyst formation, lending itself to biomechanical assessment. Many of the assessments made by embryologists, from ease of microinjection during intracytoplasmic sperm injection to degree of blastocyst expansion, are direct proxies for cellular biomechanics. Newer, objective and quantitative methods of biomechanical assessment are being applied to oocyte and embryo selection, with early use supporting their application in assisted reproduction.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2017.09.016

    View details for PubMedID 28987788

  • Aneuploidy rates and blastocyst formation after biopsy of morulae and early blastocysts on day 5. Journal of assisted reproduction and genetics Kort, J. D., Lathi, R. B., Brookfield, K., Baker, V. L., Zhao, Q., Behr, B. R. 2015; 32 (6): 925-930


    Studies have demonstrated high implantation rates after trophectoderm biopsy of day 5 expanded blastocysts. However, biopsy of cleavage stage embryos may adversely affect embryo development and implantation. No studies have assessed the utility of day 5 morulae and early blastocyst biopsy. This study sought to better understand these slower embryos' aneuploidy rates and implantation potential.This was a retrospective review of all autologous IVF cycles utilizing PGS at a single academic infertility center.The biopsy of day 5 morulae and early blastocysts provided 22 % additional euploid blastocysts available for fresh day 6 transfer compared to day 5 biopsy of only expanded blastocysts. Aneuploidy did correlate with embryo stage on day 5, even after controlling for maternal age, with 16 % of morulae and 35 % of blastocysts being euploid. The majority (83 %) of euploid morulae progressed to the blastocyst stage by day 6. Experience transferring slower developing embryos is limited, but preliminary pregnancy and implantation rates appear similar to euploid embryos biopsied as expanded blastocysts.The biopsy of all non-arrested embryos on day 5 provides genetic information for all blastocysts on day 6, increasing the pool of euploid blastocysts available for fresh transfer and avoiding the need to cryopreserve developmentally competent embryos without genetic information.

    View details for DOI 10.1007/s10815-015-0475-5

    View details for PubMedID 25921084

  • A retrospective cohort study to evaluate the impact of meaningful weight loss on fertility outcomes in an overweight population with infertility FERTILITY AND STERILITY Kort, J. D., Winget, C., Kim, S. H., Lathi, R. B. 2014; 101 (5): 1400-1403


    To determine if meaningful weight loss (≥10%) improved conception and live birth rates of overweight patients with infertility.A retrospective cohort study.Academic medical center.Overweight patients (body mass index ≥25 kg/m(2); n = 52) being treated for infertility and referred for weight loss counseling.Patients were given a "meaningful" weight loss goal of 10%. They were followed by an endocrinologist who provided diet and exercise recommendations, metabolic screening, and pharmacologic intervention when indicated.Pregnancy rate, live birth rate, weight loss.Thirty-two percent of the patients achieved meaningful weight loss. Patients achieving meaningful weight loss had significantly higher conception (88% vs. 54%) and live birth rates (71% vs. 37%) than those who did not.Weight loss improves live birth rates in overweight patients with infertility. Health care providers should incorporate weight loss counseling when caring for overweight patients who plan to conceive.

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2014.01.036

    View details for Web of Science ID 000335504600043

    View details for PubMedID 24581574

  • Fertility issues in cancer survivorship. CA: a cancer journal for clinicians Kort, J. D., Eisenberg, M. L., Millheiser, L. S., Westphal, L. M. 2014; 64 (2): 118-134


    Answer questions and earn CME/CNE Breakthroughs in cancer diagnosis and treatment have led to dramatic improvements in survival and the need to focus on survivorship issues. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy can be gonadotoxic, resulting in impaired fertility. Techniques to help cancer survivors reproduce have been improving over the past decade. Discussion of the changes to a patient's reproductive health after cancer treatment is essential to providing comprehensive quality care. The purpose of this review is to aid in pre- and posttreatment counseling, focusing on fertility preservation and other strategies that may mitigate risks to the patient's reproductive, sexual, and overall health. CA Cancer J Clin 2014;64:118-134. (©) 2013 American Cancer Society.

    View details for DOI 10.3322/caac.21205

    View details for PubMedID 24604743

  • Microdose follicular flare: a viable alternative for normal-responding patients undergoing in vitro fertilization? FERTILITY AND STERILITY Levens, E. D., Whitcomb, B. W., Kort, J. D., Materia-Hoover, D., Larsen, F. W. 2009; 91 (1): 110-114


    To compare cycle outcomes among normal-responding patients

    View details for DOI 10.1016/j.fertnstert.2007.11.018

    View details for Web of Science ID 000262396700017

    View details for PubMedID 18249365