Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics

, Volume 29, Issue 12, pp 1435–1442 | Cite as

1H NMR based profiling of spent culture media cannot predict success of implantation for day 3 human embryos

  • Paolo Rinaudo
  • Shehua Shen
  • Jia Hua
  • Su Qian
  • Uday Prabhu
  • Erwin Garcia
  • Marcelle Cedars
  • Dinesh Sukumaran
  • Thomas Szyperski
  • Chris Andrews
Technological Innovations



Identification of a non-invasive technique to assess embryo implantation potential in assisted reproduction would greatly increase success rates and lead more efficiently to single embryo transfer. Early studies suggested metabonomic analysis of spent culture media could improve embryo selection. The goal of this study is to assess if embryo implantation can be predicted based on proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) profiles of spent embryo culture media from patients undergoing transfer of multiple embryos on cycle day 3.


We conducted a retrospective study in an academic assisted reproduction technology (ART) program and analyzed the data in a university research center. Two hundred twenty-eight spent culture media samples originating from 108 patients were individually analyzed. Specifically, five distinct sets (1 to 5) of different types of spent media samples (volume ~14 μL) from embryos that resulted in clinical pregnancy (positive heart rate at 6 weeks gestation) (n 1 = 29; n 2 = 19; n 3 = 9; n 4 = 12; n 5 = 33; n total = 102) and from embryos that did not implant (n 1 = 28; n 2 = 29; n 3 = 18; n 4 = 15; n 5 = 36; n total = 126) were collected on day 3 of embryo growth. The media samples were profiled using 1H NMR spectroscopy, and the NMR profiles of sets 1 to 5 were subject to standard uni- and multi-variate data analyses in order to evaluate potential correlation of profiles with implantation success.


For set 1 of the media samples, a borderline class separation of NMR profiles was obtained by use of principal component analysis (PCA) and logistic regression. This tentative class separation could not be repeated and validated in any of the other media sets 2 to 5.


Despite the rigorous technical approach, 1H NMR based profiling of spent culture media cannot predict success of implantation for day 3 human embryos.


ART 1H NMR Metabonomics IVF Implantation success 

Supplementary material

10815_2012_9877_MOESM1_ESM.doc (285 kb)
Supplemental Figure 1 Carr-Purcell-Meiboom-Gill (CPMG) 1D 1H NMR spectrum recorded on an INOVA 600 spectrometer equipped with a PROTASIS micro-flow probe for a media specimen (G1.3 medium with HSA) of an embryo that implanted into the uterus. The CPMG procedure eliminates signals arising from biological macromolecules so that only the resonance lines of the low molecular weight metabolites are registered. Chemical shifts are relative to 2,2-Dimethyl-2-silapentane-5-sulfonic acid. The left upper corner insert represents an expansion of the boxed part of the spectrum. Selected resonance assignments of metabolites are indicated: Ala-Gln: Alanyl-Gutamine, Asp: Aspartate, Cit: Citrate, Glu: Glucose, Pro: Proline, Pyr: Pyruvate, Tau: Taurine. Some of the resonance lines of compounds that have thus far not been identified are located in the downfield spectral region between 6 and 9 ppm. (DOC 285 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paolo Rinaudo
    • 1
  • Shehua Shen
    • 1
    • 4
  • Jia Hua
    • 2
    • 5
  • Su Qian
    • 3
  • Uday Prabhu
    • 2
    • 6
  • Erwin Garcia
    • 2
    • 7
  • Marcelle Cedars
    • 1
  • Dinesh Sukumaran
    • 2
  • Thomas Szyperski
    • 2
  • Chris Andrews
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of OB GYN and Reproductive SciencesUniversity of CaliforniaSan FranciscoUSA
  2. 2.Departments of Chemistry and BiostatisticsState University of New York at BuffaloBuffaloUSA
  3. 3.Departments of BiostatisticsState University of New York at BuffaloBuffaloUSA
  4. 4.Department of Clinical Research and DevelopmentAuxogyn. Inc.Menlo ParkUSA
  5. 5.Fresenius KabiGrand IslandUSA
  6. 6.Bruker IndiaMumbaiIndia
  7. 7.LipoScience Inc.RaleighUSA

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