Preimplantation genetic diagnosis for sickle-cell anemia and for beta-thalassemia

Prenat Diagn. 2001 Mar;21(3):214-22. doi: 10.1002/1097-0223(200103)21:3<214::aid-pd51>;2-4.


We developed single-cell polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assays for preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) in couples carrying mutations in the beta-globin gene. With PGD the genetic status of an embryo obtained after intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) is determined by PCR analysis in single blastomeres, allowing only healthy embryos to be transferred to the uterus. We carried out nine PGD cycles using fluorescent PCR for two couples in whom the partners carried sickle-cell trait. Both couples achieved pregnancies, one of which was spontaneously aborted. We have developed two beta-thalassemia PGD protocols: one for the analysis of the 25-26delAA and the IVS2+1G>A mutation, and the other for the simultaneous detection of the IVS1+6T>C and the IVS1+110G>A mutations. For the second protocol, both non-labelled PCR and later fluorescent PCR were used. Both protocols were applied in clinical cycles (two non-labelled PCR cycles and one fluorescent PCR cycle) for two couples. The patient with the fluorescent PCR-PGD cycle became pregnant. Overall, the three fluorescent PCR assays were accurate and reliable with amplification efficiencies of minimum 93% and allele dropout (ADO) rates between 0 and 12%.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anemia, Sickle Cell / diagnosis*
  • Female
  • Fluorescence
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction* / methods
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Pregnancy
  • Preimplantation Diagnosis* / methods
  • beta-Thalassemia / diagnosis*