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A Brief Look at the History of IVF

•  In 1934 at Harvard University, scientist Gregory Pincus conducts IVF experiments on rabbits. Results suggest that similar fertilization is possible in humans.

•  A few years later, John Rock and Miriam Menkin succeed in the first IVF of human eggs. However, implanting a fertilized egg into a woman has yet to be attempted.

•  Fast forward 30 years, British scientist Robert Edwards heads to America to meet with Drs. Howard and Georgeanna Jones at John Hopkins University. They continue their research on fertilizing eggs in vitro.

•  Edwards meets Dr. Patrick Steptoe who developed laparoscopy— the retrieval of a mature human egg. The two join forces and further their research.

•  Lesley Brown and her husband John meet with Edwards and Steptoe. The duo heard about new research into IVF where eggs are fertilized with sperm outside the body in a lab and implanted into the womb.

•  Moving forward with the process in 1977, Steptoe removes an egg from Brown’s ovaries that is later fertilized. The egg develops into an embryo and is implanted into Brown’s uterus. Edwards and Steptoe discover that the fertilized egg was the first to grow in utero via IVF.

•  Born in 1978, Louise Brown was the first human to be conceived through the IVF process. She is now 38 years old.

From this point, assisted reproduction began taking off, giving hope to millions of infertile people and couples. Our surrogacy agency, Shared Conception, is proud to be a part of this movement. Call us as you think about enhancing your family. We can help you. 

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