Guest Blog: David F. Albertini
Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics (JARG) was taken over by Springer just over 10 years ago when the field of assisted reproduction and reproductive genetics has undergone a major transformation highlighted by the introduction of several new technologies and subdisciplines. Treatment cycles have grown in numbers internationally and yet improvements in success rates, now judged by the Live Birth Rate (LBR), have changed little over this time frame.
JARG has become the mainstream journal covering the field of fertility preservation with leading groups around the world drawing on it for publication of original papers having to do with gamete and gonadal tissue cryopreservation for cancer patients, meeting summaries for the International Society for Fertility Preservation, and timely reviews/metanalyses on clinical advances over the last decade.
While the field of in vitro fertilization has grown, in the past decade we have witnessed the introduction of many new assisted reproduction technologies and much debate has taken place regarding the efficiency and safety of these procedures, many of which add to the financial burden of patients in the USA. Interestingly, few of these so-called add-ons are accepted in countries like the UK where coverage is a national directive. The clinical introduction of many add-on techniques prior to thorough preclinical testing has lingered in this field for many years but has become an especially contentious subject over the past decade.
Simply stated, most of these techniques are aimed at selecting the best gamete (egg or sperm) or embryo to transfer. Various tests on media composition, and the introduction of time lapse imaging whereby single embryos are recorded and properties of growth and morphology are evaluated in an effort to identify the embryo with the highest implantation potential. In particular, and most contentiously, preimplantation genetic testing has been offered to patients at additional costs to select embryos that might harbor chromosomal conditions leading to birth defects or miscarriage. JARG has maintained a balanced coverage of these papers and has become a leading guide for physicians, genetic counselors, scientists and patients considering the use of PGT-A o PGT-M (for detection of monogenic disorders).
Gamete donors now include women who have the option to store frozen oocytes/eggs for future use. JARG is now recognized as a leading medium for publication of papers dealing with all manner of issues relating to the cryopreservation of eggs, sperm, and embryos from basic technology through to legal and bioethical implications as these technologies permeate society.