Class 12 Biology Reproductive Health Infertility


Inability to give birth to a child or inability to conceive is called infertility.

The reasons for infertility can be physical, hereditary, drugs, psychological etc.

The couples could be assisted to have their own child through certain special techniques called as assisted reproductive technologies.

Assisted reproductive technologies-

1. In vitro fertilization (IVF)-

  • IVF involves fertilization of ovum outside the body followed by embryo transfer (EF).
  • Ova from the wife/donor female and sperms from the husband/donor male are collected and are induced to get fuse to form zygote in the laboratory.
  • The zygote is then transferred into the fallopian tube called as zygote intra-fallopian transfer (ZIFT).
  •  If the embryo is with more than 8 blastomeres, it is transferred into the uterus called as intra uterine transfer (IUT).
  • The transferred embryo completes their further development within the uterus.


Fig. embryo formed by IVF

2. Gamete intra fallopian transfer (GIFT)- Here, ovum is collected from a donor female and is transferred into the fallopian tube of another female who cannot produce ovum, but can provide suitable environment for fertilization and further development of embryo.

3. Intra cytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI)- In this method, sperm is directly injected into the ovum under lab conditions.

Fig. injection of sperm into ovum  

4. Artificial insemination or intra uterine insemination - Here the semen collected either from the husband or a healthy donor is artificially introduced either into the vagina or into the uterus of the female.

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