A New Hope Fertility Center in New York City has developed a prototype robot that could potentially automate the in vitro fertilization (IVF) process in the future. The robot can be controlled using a PlayStation controller and has successfully helped deliver babies.
A team of engineers from Barcelona, Spain has successfully designed and built a sperm-injecting robot that has fertilized more than a dozen human eggs, resulting in healthy embryos and the birth of two baby girls. The robot, which was used by New Hope Fertility Center in New York City, is a prototype that could be used to automate the in vitro fertilization (IVF) process in the future, potentially making it more accessible and affordable for patients who require it.
One engineer used a Sony PlayStation 5 controller to position a robotic needle and using a camera, it then moved forward on its own, penetrating the egg and dropping a single sperm cell.
Two healthy embryos eventually turned into two baby girls, who researchers claim are the first ones born after fertilization by a “robot.”
The IVF process is currently performed manually by trained embryologists who handle eggs and sperm using ultra-thin hollow needles under a microscope. These labs are expensive, and the process is lengthy, delicate, and can cost up to $20,000 per attempt in the US. However, startups such as Overture Life are working towards automating the process, and Overture has raised $37 million from investors to support its work.
Subscribe to GreatGameIndia
The ultimate goal of automating IVF is to make it more accessible and to help more people to have children. Globally, around 500,000 children are born through IVF each year, but many people don’t have access to fertility medicine or can’t afford it. By making IVF more affordable and less labor-intensive, entrepreneurs hope to see a significant increase in the number of children born via IVF in the future.
According to a peer-reviewed study published on Monday in the journal Nature Neuroscience, scientists have developed an A.I. system focused on turning people’s thoughts into text.