Dr. Robert Kiltz, owner and director of the first successful IVF center in Central New York, is proud to congratulate Robert Edwards on winning the 2010 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine “for the development of in vitro fertilization”. The Society for Assisted Reproductive Technology (or SART) recently released data for 2008 stating that 361 clinics reported to them on 140,795 treatment cycles leading to the birth of 56,790 babies. These births are directly related to Robert Edwards’ vision that IVF could be useful as a treatment for infertility. His achievements have made it possible to treat infertility, a medical condition afflicting a large proportion of humanity including more than 10% of all couples worldwide.
Edwards worked systematically to realize his goal, discovered important principles for human fertilization, and succeeded in accomplishing fertilization of human egg cells in test tubes (or more precisely, cell culture dishes). His efforts were finally crowned by success on 25 July, 1978, when the world’s first “test tube baby” was born. During the following years, Edwards and his co-workers refined IVF technology and shared it with colleagues around the world.
Approximately four million individuals have so far been born following IVF. Many of them are now adult and some have already become parents. A new field of medicine has emerged, with Robert Edwards leading the process all the way from the fundamental discoveries to the current, successful IVF therapy. His contributions represent a milestone in the development of modern medicine.