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Outcome Measurement for Assisted Reproductive Technology. DAVID L. KEEFE, M.D. Tufts New England Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts Laboratory for Reproductive Medicine, Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA Brown University, and Women & Infants Hospital, Providence, RI .

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Outcome Measurement for Assisted Reproductive Technology

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Outcome Measurement for Assisted Reproductive Technology

DAVID L. KEEFE, M.D.

Tufts New England Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts

Laboratory for Reproductive Medicine, Marine Biological Laboratory, Woods Hole, MA

Brown University, and Women & Infants Hospital, Providence, RI


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Overview of Presentation

  • Introduction to ART procedures

  • Study population

    • How factor in study populations for ART studies

    • How should IVF/ICSI/Donor Egg be factored in?

  • Study Design

    • Efficacy measures: Primary and secondary endpoints

    • How should success be defined?

    • Safety endpoint measures

  • A look into the future of ART outcome measurement


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Assisted Reproductive Technologies

  • In Vitro Fertilization/Embryo Transfer (IVF-ET), w/ or w/o ICSI

  • Gamete Intrafallopian Tranfer (GIFT)

  • Zygote Intrafallopian Transfer (ZIFT)

  • Tubal Embryo Transfer (TET)

  • Controlled Ovarian Hyperstimulation (COH) w/ Intrauterine Inseminations


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IVF Steps

  • Ovarian down-regulation w/ OCP, GnRH agonist or antagonist

  • Controlled ovarian hyperstimulation with gonadotropins; U/S, E2 monitoring

  • Trigger maturation with hCG

  • Retrieval

  • Fertilization by IVF or ICSI

  • Culture embryos

  • Transfer embryos w/ or w/o hatching

  • Luteal support


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IVF- Clinical Processes

Sperm collection

Assess sperm quality and count

Wash sample

Egg equilibration

Assessment of fertilization

Wash/remove

excess sperm

Incubate

Assess &

Transfer


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IVF- Laboratory Processes

Sperm collection

Eggs retrieved

Eggs stripped and cleaned

Wash sample

Egg equilibration

Assess sperm quality and count

Fertilization- IVF or ICSI

Wash/remove

excess sperm

Assess fertilization

Assess &

Transfer Embryos

Incubate


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Controlled Ovarian Hyperstimulation Regimens for Assisted Reproductive Technology

Day

of hCG

Day 1 FSH/HMG

GnRH Antagonist

Protocols

Day 6

of FSH/HMG

225 IU per day

(150 IU Europe)

Individualized Dosing of FSH/HMG

250 mg per day antagonist

Day 2 or 3

of menses

GnRH Agonist

Protocols

Day 1 of FSH/HMG

Day 6

of FSH/HMG

Day

of hCG

7 – 8 days

after estimated ovulation

225 IU per day

(150 IU Europe)

Individualized Dosing of FSH/HMG

GnRHa 1.0 mg per day

up to 21 days

0.5 mg per day of GnRHa

OCP

Down regulation


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Overview of Presentation

  • Introduction to ART procedures

  • Study population

    • How factor in study populations for ART studies

    • How should IVF/ICSI/Donor Egg be factored in?

  • Study Design

    • Efficacy measures: Primary and secondary endpoints

    • How should success be defined?

    • Safety endpoint measures

  • A look into the future of ART outcome measurement


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Differences in Study Populations be Factored Into ART Studies

  • IVF/ICSI/Donor Egg patients differ in underlying disease

  • Differ in rate of egg dysfunction IVF>ICSI>Egg donor

  • Egg dysfunction (a.k.a. ovarian reserve, age, etc.) best predictor of outcome (can determine log-order differences in pregnancy rates among groups of patients)

  • Studies should control for study population differences through inclusion/exclusion criteria, case-control or stratification


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Overview of Presentation

  • Introduction to ART procedures

  • Study population

    • How factor in study populations for ART studies

    • How should IVF/ICSI/Donor Egg be factored in?

  • Study Design

    • Efficacy measures: Primary and secondary endpoints

    • How should success be defined?

    • Safety endpoint measures

  • A look into the future of ART outcome measurement


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Outcome Measures for ART

  • Deliveries/initiated cycles- the gold standard

  • Surrogate clinical outcomes

    • Ongoing viable pregnancy (+FH)

    • Clinical pregnancy rate (+FH)

    • Biochemical pregnancy rate

  • Surrogate biologic outcomes

    • Number of follicles

    • Peak E2

    • Number eggs aspirated

    • Fertilization rate

    • Embryo cleavage and morphology rates


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Outcome Measures for ART-Deliveries/Initiated Cycles

  • The gold standard

  • Large power needed

  • Expensive

  • Difficult-to-measure, but important patient differences have greater impact than drug therapy on this outcome


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Outcome Measures for ART-Surrogate Clinical Outcomes

  • Close to gold standard

  • Less power needed

  • Clinically important outcome

  • May miss clinically-important differences, e.g. miscarriage rates

  • Contaminated by clinic practices, e.g. cancellation policies


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Outcome Measures for ART-Surrogate Biologic Outcomes

  • Far from gold standard

  • Much less power needed

  • May not reflect clinically important outcome, e.g. young women with low response to COH still have excellent outcomes; subtle differences in drug potency on egg yield and E2 can be managed by altering dosing


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How Should Success be Defined?

  • Superiority to comparator (placebo;active control)

  • Equivalence to active comparator

  • Non-inferiority to active comparator

  • Success should be defined not only according to pregnancy rate or its surrogate, but also according to convenience and discomfort level


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Success Should be Defined Based on Equivalence or Non-Inferiority to Comparator

  • Superiority to comparator (placebo;active control)- not necessary for new drug to prove useful for patient care

  • Equivalence or Non-inferior drugs would:

    • Spur competition in market

    • Allow multiple options affecting convenience/comfort, which differ according to patient preference, e.g. vaginal vs. IM route for progesterone therapy


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Example- Antagonist improves convenience w/o improving pregnancy outcome (also, vag. prog, s.q. gts.)

Antagonist

Agonist

vs.

* Based on median duration of use. North American Ganirelix study.


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Safety Endpoints

  • Ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome

  • Miscarriage rate

  • Multiple pregnancy rate

  • Ectopic pregnancy rate


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Safety Endpoints- Ovarian Hyperstimulation syndrome

  • Life-threatening

  • Risk sets upper limit on COH

  • Risk may be modified by lowering peak estradiol e.g. aromatase inhibors, LH


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Safety Endpoints-Miscarriage Rate

  • Common (15-70%)

  • Affected by patient-specific factors (e.g. age, ovarian reserve)

  • May be influenced by all stages of ART, e.g. stimulation regimens, luteal phase support, culture media, etc.


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Multiple Gestations and ART

  • Common (15-50%)

  • Major obstetric, pediatric and public health concern (prematurity, C.P., C/S rate, preeclampsia, gestational diabetes)

  • Affected by patient-specific factors (e.g. age, ovarian reserve)

  • Affected by (elusive ) clinician practices, e.g. number of viable embryos transferred

  • Monozygotic twinning also should be considered, since is related to COH, increased in ART and causes significant morbidity (twin-twin tx)

  • Should imprinting abnormalities (Beckwith-Wiedemann, Angelmann Sydromes, PIH) be considered an ART risk (DeBaun et al, AJHG, 2001)?


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Overview of Presentation

  • Introduction to ART procedures

  • Study population

    • How factor in study populations for ART studies

    • How should IVF/ICSI/Donor Egg be factored in?

  • Study Design

    • Efficacy measures: Primary and secondary endpoints

    • How should success be defined?

    • Safety endpoint measures

  • A look into the future of ART outcome measurement


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The Future of IVF Outcome Measurement

  • Multicenter network to facilitate RCT’s

  • Greater racial and ethnic diversity in clinical studies to ensure generalizability of data, as mandates increase access of working and middle class Americans to ART

  • Improve biological surrogate outcomes


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The Future of IVF Outcome Measurement-Improving Biological Surrogate Outcomes

  • Aneuploidy ubiquitous and related to ART failure, through increased embryo apoptosis, implantation failure and miscarriage

  • Thus, may provide a meaningful biologic surrogate outcome

  • Safety problems with IVF stem from attempts to overcome egg aneuploidy through COH, e.g. OHSS and multiple gestations

  • May be increased by COH (e.g. by short-cutting normal selection process, altering follicular environment)

  • New technologies to dx aneuploidy e.g. CGH, SKY

  • May be able to dx predisposition to aneuploidy


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Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Aneuploid Embryos Can Develop Normally Until Day 5 of Life!

Development of Embryo with Trisomy 21, determined by PGD on day 3, with develoment to normal-appearing blastocyst


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Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) Can Improve Implantation Rate

Identification of chromosomes X,Y,13,18,21,15,16,22

Implantation Rate

PGD24.2%

Controls12.4% (p<0.001)

Gianaroli et al F+S, 1999


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Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) Predicts IVF Outcome

  • Age >37

  • > 2 failed cycles of IVF

  • 216 couples

  • 3 groups, depending on # normal embryos available after PGD

    0 normal1 normal>1 normal

    #patients272655

    #embryos114118322

    #transfers81448

    Births/patient4%15%31%

    Ferraretti, et al World Congress IVF, 2002


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Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) in Patients with Repeated Miscarriages

76% of embryos from patients with Recurrent Pregnancy Loss have aneuploidy

Pellicer, et al F+S 71:1033, 1999


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FSH then LH

(Gonal F, Repronex, Follistim, Bravelle, then hCG)

Metaphase I (MI)

Metaphase II (MII)

Gt.s’ Play Key Role in Meiosis

Immature Oocytes w/I

Follicles


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Eggs From Older Women Have Abnormal Spindles

Age (years) % Abnormal Spindles

20-35 17

40-45 79

Battaglia et al, Hum Reprod. 1996;11:2217.


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Spindle Function Imaged by Polscope


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Eggs With Normal Spindles Develop Better


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Telomere Shortening Explains Effects of Age on Aneuploidy:

  • Late exit from the Production Line (Henderson and Edwards, 1968)

  • The effects of low levels of MtDNA deletions (Keefe, 1995)

  • Spindle abnormalities (Battaglia,1997)

  • Reactive oxygen species (Tarin, 1998)

  • Increased embryo arrest

  • Increased embryo death


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