ASRM Research Institute Discovery Corner

Grant Project Title : Establishment and characterization of miscarriage-specific human trophoblast stem cells Grant Amount : $40,000 Significance : 750,000 to 1,000,000 miscarriages happen in the United States annually. For couples who experience pregnancy loss, the cause is usually cytogenetic in 60% of cases, such as trisomy and monosomy. However, the cause of the remaining euploid miscarriages is usually not found. Therefore, there is a significant need for more studies to investigate new causes of human pregnancy loss, especially recurrent miscarriages, where 50% of couples will not find a cause. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms of miscarriages in humans, new tools are necessary to study these events as up until now; one significant barrier is the limited amount of tissue, mainly chorionic villi, available for analysis. Prior studies on early human placentation have primarily relied on transformed trophoblast cell lines or primary human trophoblast cells purified from the early placenta, which cannot be propagated. Therefore, a proliferating primary trophoblast cell culture system to study human miscarriage is an essential technical advancement to overcome these past research ...
EMD Serono has joined forces with the ASRM Research Institute to provide two outstanding grant opportunities to professionals in reproductive medicine – the Diversity Fellowship Research Award and the Nursing Professionals Research Award . Both grants are currently open, with a proposal submission deadline of January 16th, 2023 . Read further to find out more about EMD Serono and their partnership with the ASRM Research Institute. Who is EMD Serono? EMD Serono - the healthcare business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in the U.S. and Canada -aspires to create, improve and prolong life for people living with difficult-to-treat conditions like infertility, multiple sclerosis and cancer. The business is imagining the future of healthcare by working to translate the discovery of molecules into potentially meaningful outcomes for people with serious unmet medical needs. EMD Serono’s global roots go back more than 350 years with Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. Today, the business has approximately 1,500 employees around the country with commercial, clinical and research operations in Massachusetts. How does EMD Serono’s vision and commitment to research align with the ...
Grant Project Title : Human Embryo Mosaicism: Towards Understanding Longitudinal and Developmental Genetic Concordance Between Embryonic Trophectoderm, Inner Cell Mass, and Stem Cells Grant Amount : $666,000 Significance : Our hypothesis is that blastocyst regional cell genetic concordance is low, embryonic mitotic segregation errors are frequent, and that collectively, these biological factors contribute to embryonic mosaicism and limitations in predicting offspring genetic normalcy. This hypothesis is being addressed with two specific aims: 1) to elucidate regional genetic concordance/discordance within human preimplantation blastocysts trophectoderm, inner cell mass, and resulting human embryonic stem cells with single cell-sequencing; and 2) to quantify the incidence of age-related human oocyte/embryo meiotic and mitotic nondisjunctions as they contribute to blastocyst mosaicism. “ These studies represent first-in-field approaches to systematically and longitudinally identify developmental and genetic events in human embryos that must be understood to allow confidence in preimplantation genetic testing-aneuploidy (PGT-A) use and interpretations. These data will guide the future ...
Please join us in welcoming our newest ASRM Research Institute Advisory Committee member, Dr. Sarah England! Dr. England is the Alan A. and Edith L. Wolff Professor of Medicine and Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Washington University. Dr. England’s laboratory has three main lines of investigation: One focus is to determine how ion channels in the myometrium modulate uterine excitability and contractility during pregnancy. Second, her lab is investigating the role and regulation of the oxytocin receptor in controlling uterine excitability. Lastly, they are studying how disruptions in endogenous circadian rhythms affect pregnancy outcomes. Her laboratory has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association, the March of Dimes, and other federal agencies. Dr. England has authored many research and review articles and has reviewed for multiple journals in both basic science and clinical fields. She serves on review committees for multiple funding agencies including the NIH, March of Dimes, American Heart Association, and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. She was a Robert Wood Johnson Health Policy Fellow and worked in the office of Senator ...
A note from the Howard and Georgeanna Jones Foundation: The Howard and Georgeanna Jones Foundation for Reproductive Medicine is a not-for-profit organization that solicits funds from the general public to support scientific and medical research in the field of reproductive medicine. In addition to providing research grants to deserving scientific investigators, the Foundation Board of Directors is prepared to serve in an advisory capacity to the agencies it supports. We may also sponsor seminars which would be designed to evaluate public policy issues related to reproductive medicine and are proud to be the nation’s preeminent medical research foundation focused solely on reproductive medicine. Like ASRM, we are uniquely positioned to support novel ideas and innovative concepts aimed at optimizing the diagnosis and treatment of reproductive disorders and infertility. Both organizations focus on supporting areas that will have the greatest impact on the practice of reproductive medicine, particularly when other funding sources are inadequate. We at the Foundation recognize that ASRM provides the leadership, vision, and knowledge to guide and educate physicians and scientists who will ...
ASRM is excited to announce Giving Day 2022 will be on October 25th ! It’s time for us to come together as a community, celebrate our accomplishments, spread the word of our good work, and make a difference in the reproductive health and medicine community. Please SAVE THE DATE and join ASRM for Giving Day 2022 as we unite to help eliminate disparities in access to reproductive care for all. You can help by making a donation on Giving Day—October 25th! Every tax-deductible donation, no matter the amount, makes a difference and supports this year’s mission to improve access to care through research, specifically funding research to better understand disparities in reproductive care. The work of our professional community is vital to actively and deliberately address and lessen the barriers to fertility care. This day of giving is one of the many ways you can make a real difference. We look forward to having you join us for this special day. At ASRM we believe that building a family is a basic human right and together we can make the world a better place and assist in providing equal reproductive care for all. Text ASRM2022 to 41444 to make a donation on Giving Day 2022 ...
The ASRM Research Institute (RI) Discovery & Innovation Grants letter of intent opens August 22nd, 2022 . This year Investigators can submit a letter of intent for either the ASRM Discovery & Innovation Grant or the ASRM/Howard and Georgeanna Jones Foundation Investigative Scientist Award . Investigators who meet eligibility, with expertise in reproductive health and science, are encouraged to submit a letter of intent for consideration. To be considered, the letter of intent, with all required information in PDF format, must be submitted to the ASRM Research Institute ( research@asrm.org ) no later than 4:00 PM CST Friday, October 7th, 2022 . The following information must be included in your letter: • Primary investigator information (full name, degree(s), title, institution) • Title of project • Abstract • Aims and anticipated outcomes • Impact statement • Estimated award requested (no formal budget is required) To view eligibility criteria, funding priority areas, and additional information about both award opportunities, please visit our website and click on the Grant Information tab.
Grant Project Title: Identification of transcriptomic and epigenetic coordinates for post-implantation human embryonic development Grant Amount: $666,000 Significance: Post-implantation human embryonic development beyond the blastocyst stage is pertinent to a variety of disorders in human reproduction such as implantation failure, fetal defects, placental insufficiencies and early pregnancy loss. However, our knowledge of cell-lineage decisions in the post-implantation human embryo remains severely limited and there is a critical need to explore the molecular control underlying the formation of trophoblast, epiblast and hypoblast lineages and the events surrounding implantation and gastrulation. In addition, it remains one of the premier goals of reproductive medicine to identify effective biomarkers that predict successful post-implantation development and pregnancy following uterine transfer of in-vitro fertilization (IVF) embryos. Our long-term goal is to understand cellular differentiation in the post-implantation human embryo at the molecular level and develop novel genomic predictors of pregnancy outcomes for pre-implantation testing of IVF embryos. This project aims ...
As the ASRM Research Institute moves into its next phase, we are proud to announce the formation of the Research Institute Advisory Committee. This advisory committee, established in December 2021, comes on the heels of the incredible work that the ASRM Research Task Force and the Strategic Research Steering Committee started back in 2017 and completed in 2019, with the development of the Research Blueprint and formation of the ASRM Research Institute. The new Research Institute Advisory Committee will work with ASRM leadership and staff to guide the robust research agenda that was outlined in the Research Blueprint. “At the Institute’s core, we are committed to promoting and facilitating interdisciplinary research activities in the reproductive sciences that will lead to promising discoveries and next-generation reproductive care and health treatments. This is reflected in the ambitious research agenda that the ASRM Strategic Research Task Force and Strategic Steering Committee established from the beginning” says Dr. Chevis Shannon, Chief Education and Science Officer at ASRM. “We are thrilled to welcome this new team of leaders to the Research Institute. Their guidance and support ...
Ferring Pharmaceuticals values innovation; they know that with the right resources and partnerships we can advance the field of reproductive medicine and fuel additional research. Ferring Pharmaceuticals has supported and continues to support philanthropic investments in the ASRM Research Institute. In 2020, Ferring Pharmaceuticals partnered with the Society for Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (SREI) and the ASRM Research Institute to establish the REI Fellow’s Young Investigator Research Award. The purpose of this grant award is to support REI fellow-specific research in reproductive medicine. Who is Ferring: Ferring Pharmaceuticals is a research-driven, specialty biopharmaceutical company committed to helping people around the world build families and live better lives. How does Ferring’s vision and commitment to research align with the ASRM Research Institute? For 70 years, Ferring has been developing treatments for mothers and babies and has a portfolio covering treatments from conception to birth. Ferring has a robust clinical pipeline investigating numerous compounds at various stages of development. What does Ferring value most from its partnership ...
The Recurrent Pregnancy Loss Association (RPLA) was founded in 2019 by Megan Hanson and Ben Burnham in the wake of their sixth miscarriage; hoping to transform their frustration and pain into something positive and help prevent other couples from enduring the heartache they experienced. In 2020, RPLA approached ASRM to establish and help fund a research grant focused specifically on recurrent pregnancy loss. The first grant funded was recently awarded to Tsegaselassie Workalemahu PhD, MSc (University of Utah). Dr. Workalemahu’s research program is titled " Inherited Genetic Variants and Unexplained Recurrent Pregnancy Loss ”. A little more about RPLA: What is RPLA’s mission and focus? Recurrent Pregnancy Loss Association (RPLA) is dedicated to eliminating recurrent pregnancy loss through the advancement of research into causes and treatments; to providing support and resources to those affected; and to increasing awareness of the impact of miscarriage and fertility challenges on women and families. Why is supporting grant funding at ASRM important to RPLA? As the premier professional society for reproductive medicine, we believe ASRM’s membership includes professionals ...
Grant Project Title: Characterizing Fertility Concerns among Women in Academic Medicine and Evaluating the Economic Impact of Fertility Preservation for Deferred Reproduction Grant Amount: $50,000 Significance: Although women are more likely than men to pursue a career in academic medicine, they also tend to leave academic medicine, reduce their work hours, or reroute their careers during their childbearing years. In addition, many female physicians delay childbearing, and studies have documented higher rates of infertility, obstetric complications, and childlessness in female physicians relative to the general population. Female physicians report high levels of interest in fertility preservation and assisted reproduction technology (ART) options. Two primary factors that may prevent women in academic medicine from undergoing oocyte vitrification at younger ages (≤ 35 years old) include a lack of awareness regarding the importance of age on the efficiency and success of fertility preservation and the high costs of fertility preservation without adequate insurance coverage. The purpose of this project was to investigate and characterize the unique fertility concerns of women ...