JOHN MEYER / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN MEYER / CUSTOM MEDICAL STOCK PHOTO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Sperm bank. Technician in an IVF (in-vitro fertilisation) laboratory removes frozen sperm from storage. Microtubules of sperm are visible. Cryogenic (low-temperature) freezing to about -180C in a protective fluid, allows long- term storage without damaging fresh samples of sperm. When restored to normal temperature, in IVF the sperm and ova meet in a petri dish in order for fertilisation to take place. This technique is used in couples who, for some reason, are unable to conceive normally. In vitro fertilisation can result in a "test-tube baby".
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