Fabrication and function of microfluidic devices for monitoring of in-vitro fertilization processes
Author(s)Xu, Jin (Jin C.)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
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The process of assistive reproduction is often a headache and heartache for those who choose to go through it. The field currently relies heavily on morphological characteristics to determine embryo health and development success, a highly unreliable method. While they appear healthy at implantation, many embryos, in reality, have poor development potential and fail to survive within the womb. Therefore, to offset the high chances of miscarriage, multiple eggs are implanted in the uterus. This has occasionally lead to multi-fetal pregnancies, which have a higher maternal mortality risk, and, in general, is more physically demanding. This thesis researches a microfluidic device that aids in the crucial stages of in vitro- fertilization. The device allows for a fertilized egg to be cultured within, and provides the ability to carefully monitor its health through a series of metabolic assays, a better indication of embryo health. This microfluidic embryo health monitoring device is comprised of two layers of channel networks. It works through passing fluids along flow channels that are driven by control channels. The control layer, when pressurized with gas, operates as valves and peristaltic pumps along the flow layer to pump and transport fluids through the flow channels. As embryonic fluids are passed through the channels, the status of the fertilized egg can be monitored with metabolic assays taken of the embryo at various detection sites.
Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, 2007.Includes bibliographical references (leaf 36).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology