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In vitro fertilisation

In vitro fertilisation

M802/0203

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Credit

MAURO FERMARIELLO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MAURO FERMARIELLO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

In vitro fertilisation. Doctor injecting a human spermatozoon (sperm) into an egg during in vitro fertilisation (IVF). She is viewing the cell through a microscope. The procedure can be seen magnified on the monitor at centre left. The egg cell, which is held in place by the tip of a pipette (far left), has been pierced by a microneedle in a procedure known as ICSI (intracytoplasmic sperm injection). IVF is a method of artificially fertilising an egg. It is carried out when a couple cannot conceive naturally. It is common for several fertilised eggs to be introduced into the uterus, as there is a high rate of early miscarriage.

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