A revolutionary next step in in vitro maturation of oocytes
LAVIMA Fertlity, Inc. was founded by Prof. Johan Smitz (VUB), Prof. Andre Rosenthal and Elien van Hecke. The company focuses on the development and commercialisation of a biphasic in vitro maturation (IVM) culture system named "Capa-IVM” which has been developed at VUB, in a collaboration between the Follicle Biology research group (FOBI) and Centrum voor Reproductieve Geneeskunde, the fertility clinic of UZ Brussel.
The Capa-IVM technology has the potential to improve the efficiency of the currently available IVM systems for clinical use. “Capa” stands for capacitation, i.e. the in vitro culture of the oocytes is extended in order to enhance the developmental potential of the matured oocytes. The technology of IVM of oocytes is a more patient-friendly alternative for standard hormonal stimulation of the ovaries, because of the lower hormonal burden and reduced risks of adverse events. Moreover, the technology has an emerging role in onco-fertility preservation and may increase access of women to fertility treatment in countries with limited resources.