Adjusted mitochondrial DNA quantification in human embryos may not be applicable as a biomarker of implantation potential

Yi Xuan Lee, Chi Huang Chen, Shyr Yeu Lin, Yi Hui Lin, Chii Ruey Tzeng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of adjusted mitochondrial DNA quantification in human embryos as a biomarker for implantation potential. Design: Double-blind, observational, prospective analysis of an Asian population in a single university-affiliated in vitro fertilization center. A total of 1617 embryos derived from 380 infertile couples were collected. The DNA from blastomere biopsy (n = 99) or trophectoderm biopsy (n = 1518) were analyzed with next-generation sequencing. Results: The adjusted mtDNA quantification followed a non-normal distribution in both types of the embryos. When stratified by ploidy status, the adjusted mtDNA quantification was significantly higher in aneuploid trophectoderm than in euploid cells, but not in blastomeres. The adjusted mtDNA quantification of embryos showed significant but very weak positive correlation in total trophectoderm cells with maternal age (Spearman’s correlation, r = 0.095, p = 0.0028) but neither in blastomeres nor stratified by ploidy status. The median adjusted mtDNA quantification was also significantly higher in aneuploid blastocysts than in euploid ones while corrected with embryo morphology. Viable embryos did not contain significantly different quantities of adjusted mtDNA compared with nonviable embryos (implanted n = 103, non-implanted n = 164; median 0.00097 vs. 0.00088, p = 0.21) in 267 transferred blastocysts. Conclusion: Quantification of adjusted mitochondria DNA in human embryos was significantly lower in euploid blastocysts than in aneuploid blastocysts. However, no statistically significant differences regarding implantation outcome were evident. To our best knowledge, this study provides the largest scale and the first correlation data between mitochondria copy number and human embryo implantation potential in Asians.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1855-1865
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1 2019


  • Biomarker
  • Correction factors
  • IVF
  • Mitochondrial DNA copy number
  • PGT-A

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Genetics
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Genetics(clinical)


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