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Enhanced Assisted Reproductive Technology Pregnancy Rate by Prostacyclin Analog (Iloprost)

Information source: Fertility Specialists of Houston
ClinicalTrials.gov processed this data on August 23, 2015
Link to the current ClinicalTrials.gov record.

Condition(s) targeted: Pregnancy

Intervention: Iloprost (Drug); normal saline (Other)

Phase: N/A

Status: Recruiting

Sponsored by: Fertility Specialists of Houston

Official(s) and/or principal investigator(s):
George M Grunert, M.D., Principal Investigator, Affiliation: Obstetrical & Gynecological Associates


Human fallopian tube secretes high concentration of prostacyclin. Fallopian tube is the site for early embryo development. The effect of prostacyclin on human early embryo development is waiting to be clarified. The study hypothesis is prostacyclin can enhance early embryo development.

Clinical Details

Official title: Pilot Study to Examine Iloprost Can Enhance Human Assisted Reproductive Technology Pregnancy Outcomes.

Study design: Observational Model: Case Control, Time Perspective: Prospective

Primary outcome: Presence of embryo sac in uterus under ultrasound

Secondary outcome: The delivery outcome is the secondary outcome measured.

Detailed description: Huang et al, found that human fallopian tube expresses prostacyclin synthetase and cyclooxygenase. These enzyme systems synthesize abundant prostacyclin (PGI2). In the fallopian tube PGI2 causes smooth muscle relaxation, possibly facilitating tubal transport of gametes and embryos. Huang et al reported that addition of the PGI2 analogue Iloprost to embryo culture media significantly enhanced mouse embryo development to the blastocyst and complete hatched stages. The implantation and live birth rates of Iloprost cultured embryos were significantly better than non-Iloprost embryos in the mouse model. The mean weights of fetal mice were not significant different from control group. There was no teratogenic effect observed. In a previously presented study, the investigators cultured donated frozen human zygotes in culture media with and without the addition of Iloprost. The Iloprost treated embryos showed significantly better growth rate and morphology, as determined by the size, and grading of the trophectoderm and inner cell mass. Iloprost is FDA approved for the treatment of pulmonary hypertension. It has a significantly longer half-life than native PGI2. Iloprost is a class C pregnancy drug and has not been associated with teratogenic effects. This study intends to expand the usage of Iloprost to culture embryos.


Minimum age: 20 Years. Maximum age: 39 Years. Gender(s): Female.


Inclusion Criteria:

- ART case

Exclusion Criteria:

- age < 40

- no pre-implantation genetic diagnosis procedure

Locations and Contacts

Fertility Specialists of Houston, Houston, Texas 77054, United States; Recruiting
Wan-Song A Wun, Ph.D., Phone: 713-512-7680, Email: awun@obgynassociates.com
George M Grunert, M.D., Phone: 713-512-7760, Email: ggrunert@fshivf.com
Randall C Dunn, M.D., Sub-Investigator
Schenk M Leah, M.D., Sub-Investigator
Mangal K Rakesh, M.D., Sub-Investigator
Chauhan R Subodh, M.D., Sub-Investigator
Wan-Song A Wun, Ph.D., Sub-Investigator
Additional Information

Related publications:

Battenfeld R, Schuh W, Schöbel C. Studies on reproductive toxicity of iloprost in rats, rabbits and monkeys. Toxicol Lett. 1995 Aug;78(3):223-34.

Grunert GM, Dunn RC, Valdes CT, Schenk LM, Mangal RK, Wun WSA: Prostacyclin agonist (Iloprost) enhances human embryo development. Fertility and Sterility 84:S237, 2005

Huang JC, Arbab F, Tumbusch KJ, Goldsby JS, Matijevic-Aleksic N, Wu KK. Human fallopian tubes express prostacyclin (PGI) synthase and cyclooxygenases and synthesize abundant PGI. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2002 Sep;87(9):4361-8.

Huang JC, Wun WS, Goldsby JS, Matijevic-Aleksic N, Wu KK. Cyclooxygenase-2-derived endogenous prostacyclin enhances mouse embryo hatching. Hum Reprod. 2004 Dec;19(12):2900-6. Epub 2004 Oct 15.

Huang JC, Goldsby JS, Wun WS. Prostacyclin enhances the implantation and live birth potentials of mouse embryos. Hum Reprod. 2004 Aug;19(8):1856-60. Epub 2004 Jun 17.

Starting date: January 2010
Last updated: March 8, 2012

Page last updated: August 23, 2015

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