why temperature control in the IVF lab is crucial?
Temperature control in the IVF lab is crucial , as it plays an important role in the success of any IVF cycle.
The primary function of an ART laboratory is to provide an optimal environment for gametes and embryos to grow. The success of any ART cycle is very much dependant on the Quality Control (QC) and Quality Assurance (QA) maintained in the IVF laboratory. Optimization of the laboratory procedures is of great interest to the scientists in the field of IVF.
All important IVF equipment's used in IVF laboratory has direct or indirect contact with embryos, gametes or the culture media. These all should be handled and monitored in an accurate and precise way. Fine temperature regulation is critical to embryology laboratories aiming to maximize in vitro fertilization (IVF) and development, implantation and pregnancy of assisted reproductive technique (ART).
It is common practice to maintain a temperature of 37 degree C during all working and culture conditions in the IVF laboratory. This will allow for an optimal environment for the handling and culture of gametes and embryos.
The three most important physical conditions in the IVF laboratory that can be controlled are the temperature, pH and osmolality of the IVF culture medium. Laboratories are required to document and monitor these physical conditions regularly as part of their ongoing QC/QA programs. Monitoring and documentation of temperatures inside incubators, refrigerators and freezers is an integral part of routine day to day QC in the IVF laboratory.
Temperature measurements and temperature control in the IVF lab are crucial for the success of IVF cycle. All important equipment like the incubators, micro manipulator, refrigerator, freezing machine etc. should be on uninterrupted power supply with trigger alarm feature. There should be a wall mounted data logger displaying the laboratory ambient temperature and humidity levels. All IVF equipment should be on urgent power supply. Crucial equipment like incubators, micro manipulator systems, medical refrigerator, freezing machines etc should be on uninterrupted power supply with a trigger alarm or call back service.
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The optimal temperature range for human IVF culture is assumed to be between the limits of 36.7°C and 37.0°C; deviations above and below this range should be regarded as critical/dangerous. The effects of sub optimal temperature control can be manifested as fragmentation, delayed cell division, or reduced pregnancy rates due to induced chromosomal abnormalities that jeopardize implantation or result in early pregnancy loss, particularly at the pre-clinical stage (biochemical pregnancies/blighted ova). Therefore every effort should be made to ensure that there is no temperature fluctuation during any laboratory manipulation that involves the handling of oocytes or embryos and that the temperature is maintained at 37°C.
Oocytes need to be kept at body temperature (36–37°C) as much as possible. There should also be appropriate equipment in use to maintain this temperature when laboratory and egg collection areas are on different sites. Scanning Petri dishes, collection tubes and heating blocks are pre-warmed at 37°C. Follicular aspirates are checked for the presence of oocyte-cumulus complexes under a stereo dissecting microscope with transmitted illumination base and heated stage. Exposure of oocytes to light should be minimized where possible.
Incubator temperature is one of the most precious variables in IVF labs. When the IVF started, almost all incubator temperatures were set at 37 degrees which mimic in vivo conditions. The majority of embryologists consider culture at 37 degrees is the back bone for the incubators. Embryology laboratories cover almost all IVF/ICSI-ET treatment needs with at least 2–3 incubators that should be checked daily for proper maintenance of temperature regulation. The absolute need for daily quality control of incubator temperature is justified by
1. The difficulty to maintain a stable temperature because of frequent opening of the incubator door
2. Overnight power failure where incubators indicate the set temperature and the external thermometer indicates a drop of more than 1 °C with deleterious effect on embryo cleavage and development and
3. Degrees of differences at different locations within the same incubator.
Prolonged exposure of cultures to temperatures other than optimal 37 °C, reduces the ability of fertilization and nullifies the ability of cell division or cleavage, growth, implantation potential and subsequent achievement of pregnancy.
The temperature has to be maintained in dish used for embryos and other samples. This dish are specifically designed, made and tested for IVF laboratory so that the temperature inside the media of the dish be at 37 degree C when the stage is set at the same temperature. In all other dishes that are routinely used in the IVF lab, the temperature inside the dish will be well below 37 degree when the stage is set at 37 degree. This is due to the fact that there is an air gap of various distances, depending on the dish, between the bottom of the dish and the heated stage. Make it sure that heated stages maintain a temperature of 37 degree in the media inside the dish and not just 37 degree on the heated stage.
The control of the temperature of refrigerators and freezers where culture media is kept is extremely important. A lot of effort on monitoring the temperatures of heated stages and incubators is spent, and the same should be the case with the equipment that stores very important and sensitive culture media as well.
Laminar flow hoods together with HEPA filtration, captures and removes airborne contaminants and provides a particulate free work environment. The stereo microscope can be built into the laminar flow cabinet and the entire table top can be heated to maintain temperatures at 37°C. This should be used for handling oocytes and embryos. All microscopes should have a heated stage maintained at 37°C. Inverted microscopes which have a larger working distance are used during micro manipulation and embryo monitoring. Upright microscopes are used for sperm evaluation. The microscope should be attached to a video camera system for teaching and assessment purposes. Test tube warmers are used for maintaining the temperature of follicular aspirates contained in test tubes at 37°C.
A very "critical" parameter in embryo culture is "precise" monitoring. Fluctuations in temperature even by a fraction of a degree can result in numerous culture sub optimal embryo formation and/or at times a stage referred to as "developmental arrest". All "temperature related gadgets /IVF equipment's" like incubators, test tube warmers, heating tables, heating plates etc. should be precisely maintained at the "ideal" required level. Failure to do so will end up in a disaster.
Using data loggers to monitor real time incubator temperature ... Quality Control (QC) in the IVF laboratory plays an important role in the success of any IVF
All ivf laboratory should maintain 37°C temperature and proper care should be taken to record and maintain the same. Any fluctuation or deviation should immediately be reported and taken care of. Shivani Scientific Industries (P) Ltd. is a highly focused company on Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) and Biomedical Equipment's with a proven track record of over 42 years. Shivani has contributed in development of ART field in India significantly. Shivani deals in all types of IVF laboratory equipment's and consumables. It's products like Tissue guard Alarm System, OCTAX - Log & Guard TM, Rapid Recovery System and Freeze Control are must for all ivf laboratories. These IVF equipment's are monitoring & alarming device for application in IVF lab & other many critical areas where a strict surveillance is of utmost importance. The device senses any abnormal condition & sends SMS note (alarm) to the user’s mobile device. The device has provision to accommodate GSM SIM card in it. The working principle is to provide SMS – Alarm to the mobile device in the event of Temperature out HIGH Range or LOW Range or whenever there is any abnormal condition in the system under observation. Maximum 5 users can be sent alarm at a time. The device operates on 230 VAC supply, the complete function is controlled through a microprocessor based circuit system.
Shivani Scientific also specialises in providing Turnkey Project Services for setting up of IVF Labs, OT rooms, ICU, CCU, NICU and CSSD, complying with various international regulatory standards. Shivani Scientific has recently started a new division for IVF consumables which brings world class products such as Wallace range of medical devices and LifeGlobal range of Culture Media.
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