JOHN MCLEAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN MCLEAN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Sperm preparation for IVF. Technician preparing sperm cells for use in in vitro fertilisation (IVF). Tubes containing centrifuged semen are seen at centre left. A centrifuge separates fluids by spinning them rapidly, causing denser fluids to travel to the lower parts of the tube. This separates sperm cells from seminal fluid, allowing them to be collected easily. IVF is used when a couple cannot conceive naturally. Sperm from the father is introduced to the mother's egg cells (ova) in a laboratory. If fertilisation is successful, one or more embryos are placed into the mother's uterus and a normal pregnancy ensues.
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