Nanopoint's cellTRAY Microfluidics System for assisted reproduction applications is intended to help scientists and physicians achieve quality improvements in their in vitro embryos, provide time-lapse imaging throughout the development of the embryo, easily enable morphology monitoring and metabolic profiling, and foster improvements in cryobiology.
Successful outcomes for assisted reproductive technologies have improved over the years with defined nutrient media formulations and timely-added growth factors during the process of oocyte maturation and fertilization. However, while these manipulations have improved embryo development, higher rates of successful implantations have not followed. Some embryologists believe that embryo quality may be affected by the static culturing of the oocytes and zygotes. A number of variables can be introduced in static culturing such as changes in temperature, O2 content, shear forces from the manipulation, and possible contaminants.
Instead, reproducing a dynamic culturing environment through microfluidics is thought to increase the quality of embryos. In natural conception, the ovum is released from the ovaries and is immediately subjected to waves of fluid that bathe the oviducts. Fertilization and blastocyst development occurs in the oviducts such that the embryo is constantly moving, rolling, and contacting the oviduct walls on its journey prior to implantation. A microfluidics platform for culturing eggs would reflect physiologic conditions where nutrients and waste exchange occur rapidly and constantly, and complete media change is eliminated.
Nanopoint's cellTRAY Microfluidics System provides laminar flow similar to in vivo conditions. The flow delivery software enables a pulse rhythm which mimics the oviduct environment, providing physiological benefits such as nutrient media content on all surfaces of the oocyte, and a constant flow of fresh media without the need for cell manipulations.
The system includes:
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