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Prop 91 - just one of three ballot initiatives on marijuana decriminalization Steve Dipaola/Reuters

Ballot initiatives take the pulse of the nation

Editor’s note: There were 146 state-wide ballot measures up for consideration by voters in this week’s midterm elections, covering all manner of controversial issues – from abortion and guns to minimum…
Three person IVF will prevent mitochondrial disease. Sukharevskyy Dmytro/Shutterstock

The ethics of three-person IVF

The UK parliament will soon consider making Britain the first country to allow three person IVF. The regulations are yet to be approved, but the government is currently backing moves to allow the creation…
Less ‘Vocation, Vocation, Vocation’ according to one lifestyle expert. Woman by Shutterstock

Hard Evidence: does fertility really ‘drop off a cliff’ at 35?

Everyone’s favourite property expert and house hunter extraordinaire, Kirstie Allsopp, raised some eyebrows when she recently suggested that women’s fertility “falls off a cliff” when they hit 35. Her…
IVF is a medical miracle for many, but for others it’s just business. Janine/Flickr

AUDIO Q&A: The business of IVF

Monash IVF will float on the Australian Securities Exchange today, the second Australian IVF firm to do so. With assisted reproductive technology now firmly on the radar of investors, we investigate the…
There are outstanding questions about the long-term safety of IVF. Nina Matthews Photography/Flickr

Rest assured, IVF babies grow into healthy adults

Babies conceived through in vitro fertilisation (IVF) mostly grow up to be healthy adults and compare well to those conceived naturally, according to research my colleagues and I have just published in…
Women’s ability to conceive and give birth to healthy babies starts to decline before the age of 30. Image from shutterstock.com

Health Check: when does fertility decline?

It’s said that “40 is the new 30” and “50 is the new 40”. But, when it comes to female fertility, 40 is still 40, and the likelihood of successful pregnancy and childbirth has notably decreased from age…
No-one wants to hear about the failures and financial costs. Paul Stevenson

Desperate couples are misled by only positive reports of IVF

Reflecting on her imminent departure as head of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, the body that regulates IVF and fertility services, Lisa Jardine said in an interview last week that “nobody…
Way before the birds and the bees. Jpogi

New fertility treatment brings hope, but not for all

It’s Nobel season and who could forget IVF pioneer Sir Robert Edwards who won the accolade for medicine in 2010? More than ever before, reproductive medicine is throwing up new treatments and answers to…
Mitochondrial genes are inherited from our mothers’ eggs and passed on through her daughters to subsequent generations. Shutterstock

Meet mama, papa and mama: how three-parent IVF works

The UK government has announced its intention to draft proposals allowing carriers of mitochondrial disease to have babies using a controversial IVF treatment that’s currently prohibited. The procedure…
In a first for Australia, an ovarian tissue transplant has helped a woman fall pregnant after chemotherapy. http://www.flickr.com/photos/stacylynn/

Post-chemo woman pregnant after ovary tissue transplant

For the first time ever in Australia, a woman whose chemotherapy rendered her infertile has fallen pregnant using ovarian…
Embryos matter because of what they mean to those for whom they were generated. UTS

Frozen in time: clarifying laws on IVF embryo use and destruction

Over the past two decades, the frozen preservation of embryos has become routine practice in IVF. What currently happens to embryos next is controlled by overlapping and complicated rules that confuse…
Women who undergo IVF are at higher risk of getting blood clots during pregnancy, the study found. http://www.flickr.com/photos/hubersen

IVF linked to higher blood clot risk

Women who fall pregnant through in vitro fertilisation are at a higher risk of blood clots and artery blockages than women…
Those who know the identity of their donor from a young age are less likely to experience psychological problems. Ron Wiecki

Rights of donor children must come before egg donation compensation

University of Tasmania academic Meredith Nash recently argued on The Conversation that women who donate their eggs for fertility treatments should be financially compensated. It’s a risky and time-consuming…
Paying up to $5,000 in a carefully regulated market would recognise the inconveniences associated with donation. misterbenben

Women who donate their eggs deserve compensation – here’s why

Women are generally born with about a million eggs. Yet, women with reproductive problems or “older” women (over the age of 40) often cannot conceive with their own eggs. The solution is to use donor eggs…
A human egg being worked on in an IVF clinic. Adrian Wiggins

IVF treatment for older women: is age the greatest concern?

Considerable public controversy exists around the question of access to in-vitro fertilisation treatment (IVF) for older women. Some support unlimited, publicly-funded access for all infertile women and…
Millions of babies have been born after the use of assisted reproductive technologies, and nothing has gone wrong with the vast majority. Chiceaux Lynch

No need for alarm about birth defects after assisted conception

Some people may be wondering whether it’s wise to undergo assisted reproduction after recent media headlines about these technologies increasing the risk of birth defects. In fact, millions of babies have…
Researchers studied nearly 310,000 births between 1986 and 2002. flickr/spamily

Does all assisted reproduction lead to birth defects?

Recently published research helps clarify the risk of birth defects linked to assisted reproductive technology. The study authors (including myself) found that a major factor for birth defects was parental…

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