A mass spectrometry-based targeted metabolomics strategy of human blastocoele fluid: a promising tool in fertility research

Mol Biosyst. 2012 Apr;8(4):953-8. doi: 10.1039/c1mb05358b. Epub 2011 Oct 21.


Embryo assessment is currently performed through the analysis of morphology and cleavage rate. Recent studies have sought to identify a correlation between quali-quantitative profiles of small molecules of metabolic interest and the outcome of embryo transfer. Approaches relying on both optical and non-optical spectroscopy have been proposed to non-invasively monitor the embryo culture media. However, the non-invasive approach only offers an indirect strategy to monitor embryos and a turn-around solution to bypass the limits of detection of these analytical techniques. In this paper we pave the way for direct metabolic assessment of embryos through the mass-spectrometry-based analysis of blastocoele fluid, which is withdrawn from the blastocoele cavity prior to cryostorage of blastocysts. We conclude that it is possible to detect most of the metabolites of potential interest right at the very heart of the blastocyst, without disrupting the workflow of a classic laboratory pipeline.

MeSH terms

  • Blastocyst / metabolism*
  • Body Fluids / chemistry*
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Computational Biology
  • Culture Media
  • Embryo Culture Techniques
  • Embryo Implantation
  • Embryo Transfer / methods
  • Embryonic Development
  • Fertility
  • Humans
  • Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Metabolomics*


  • Culture Media