In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a brave new world of medical science that is still being developed and perfected today. Even more mind-blowing is how recent the study of the the human reproductive system came into being and how many facets of this complex system are still unknown. See below for a brief timeline of the evolution of IVF (Sources: Medical Daily and Pacific Fertility Center).

Timeline of IVF History:

  • 1840s – Scientists first learned how conception takes place just 173 years ago, according to PBS, when researchers discovered a sperm from the male reproductive system enters an ovum from the female reproductive system.
  • 1953 – The first human birth from frozen sperm was reported
  • 1968 – The first in vitro fertilization procedure is done, when doctors joined egg and sperm in a lab and then implanted it in a woman.
  • 1986 – Doctors report the first human birth from a frozen embryo, which leads to the first human birth from a frozen oocyte.
  • 1978 – The birth in England of Louise Joy Brown, the first human conceived using in vitro fertilization
  • 1983 – birth of a child using egg donation.
  • 1984 – A successful birth from a cryopreserved embryo.
  • 1986 – A successful live birth from a cryopreserved egg.
  • 1990 – Genetic screening to identify embryos without genetic defects in at-risk couples.
  • Early 1990s – Introduction of preimplantation genetic screening (PGS) to help IVF patients at risk for miscarriage
  • 1992 – Birth of four healthy babies (to 4 couples) following the use of intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
  • 2014 – Birth of a baby to a woman receiving a uterine transplant from a living 61-year-old donor.