Numerical Simulations Demonstrate Safe Vitrification and Warming of Embryos Using the Rapid-i™ Device
Magazine article, 2009
During cryopreservation of human
embryos, ice crystal formation in the embryos or
in surrounding media may cause cryodamage to
them and can be lethal. A strategy to avoid this is
the vitrification procedure when the embryo and
the surrounding medium undergo the transition
to glassy state rather than a crystalline one
during cooling. Similarly, recrystallization in the
embryo or the medium must be avoided during
the warming process. The necessary conditions
for this are rapid cooling and warming rates.
We assess the cooling and warming rates in
the Rapid-i™ device for vitrification and
cryostorage of human embryos from Vitrolife
Sweden AB with help of numerical simulations.
We demonstrate that the fast cooling and
warming rates necessary for safe vitrification and
warming are achieved in the device. We also
determine safe margins for the warming procedure.