<< Back to glossary index


Process in which eggs are removed from a woman’s ovaries and fertilised with sperm in a laboratory. One or two embryos are then transferred to the woman’s womb to grow and develop.

Use in clinical context

IVF is a technique that can be used to help people with fertility problems have a baby.

During IVF, it is possible to take a small number of cells from the embryo to test for genomic variants that are known to result in some genetic conditions. Embryos that do not carry the variant can then be transferred to the womb. This is known as pre-implantation genetic diagnosis and is an option for parents who do not want to pass on known familial pathogenic variants to their children.

Related terms

Egg (gamete) | Sperm | Variant

Last updated on 13th December, 2021