Causes & Treatment

Are your fertility team lined up to use this innovative egg storage tech?

Eloise Edington  |   10 Aug 2022

Egg freezing is a pivotal step in thousands of fertility journeys. But how are your cells stored, exactly?

We put a poll to our Fertility Squad community and 45% confirmed they’d frozen sperm, eggs and/or embryos, with 75% saying they do question where exactly their cells are, and if they’re stored safely. Each one, we know, is irreplaceable.

So, we couldn’t be more excited to partner with TMRW Life Sciences, the fertility tech company pioneering the world’s first and only automated platform for the management, identification and storage of frozen human eggs and embryos. Their mission – to safeguard life’s most precious cells, using tech innovation to bring a new standard of care for IVF across the globe.

Is your fertility team up-to-date with TMRW and what they can bring to your care plan? Run through our quick overview and find out more about TMRW in their own words, before your next appointment.

Here’s why we’re thrilled to be working with TMRW’s pioneering team. 

Words by Fertility Help Hub with TMRW

Tech developments – but do you have access? 

It’s been over 40 years since the first IVF baby was born. And we’d expect the technology powering this incredible process to have moved on. A lot. It has, in many areas: 

  •   new fertility treatments – like ICSI – allow the strongest sperm to be selected for fertilisation in the lab
  •   time-lapse imaging allows embryologists to observe the development from fertilisation to embryo transfer, maximising success rates 
  •   improvements in embryo culture, along with updated guidelines, have increased the quality of embryos for transfer, while decreasing the quantity needed

Plus, so much more.

And yet, you’d be surprised how little has been done to innovate and enhance cryostorage methods – the way our eggs, embryos and other human cells are stored, monitored and protected.

What is cryopreservation, and why is it changing? 

Cryopreservation, also known as ‘vitrification’, is the process of storing human cells at very low temperatures, in order to keep them safe for use in the future. So, when we talk about ‘freezing our eggs’, we’re talking about cryopreservation.

Across the world, fertility specialists and embryologists have done (and continue to do) an incredible job with storing frozen eggs, sperm and embryos. But this is manual work with a margin for error – errors which can have catastrophic consequences, from misplacement of eggs – yes, it does happen – to the wrong embryo being transferred into a patient. Unthinkable, but possible.

Right now, IVF labs and teams around the world are managing tens of millions of frozen fertility cells, and counting. But we’re at a tipping point, because with more people than ever using cryopreservation – TMRW predict over 300 million people will owe their lives to IVF by 2100 – the current manual storage and management processes won’t be up to the job.

Automated cryostorage – a new standard of care

Founded in 2018, TMRW provides the first and only automated, robotic, software-guided specimen management solution for the storage of frozen eggs and embryos. One TMRW robot offers complete safety and security for every embryo and gamete in the lab, remotely monitoring eggs and embryos 24/7 and conducting hundreds of automated checks each day.

The platform ensures a chain of identity for each sample at all times, giving patients peace of mind with 99.999% accuracy through automated handling (manual gamete and embryo storage currently achieves 99%). Tabloid reports of mixed up embryos could be a thing of the past.

Peace of mind, where you need it most

TMRW’s world-leading integrated software and hardware solution provides precision oversight, connection for clinics and peace of mind for intended parents, with automation to reduce the risk of human error. Our precious cells are traceable, using radio frequency identification (RFID), and through the TMRW platform, clinics are empowered to track and locate samples, make audits and perform other tasks, with touch screen technology which works like an ATM. 

This is the future of cryopreservation. With TMRW’s platform already adopted by leading fertility clinics across the United States, access will be available in Europe and the UK later this year. Speak to your fertility specialist today, and make sure they’re on board.

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