Merck Launches Two Innovative Technologies to Support Couples on Their Fertility Treatment Journey

Not intended for U.S. based media

  • Gavi™ allows freezing of oocytes and embryos at key stages
  • Geri™ medium supports undisturbed embryo growth
  • Launches in line with Merck's healthcare strategy to deliver innovation through best-in-class assets for the benefit of patients

DARMSTADT, Germany, Oct. 4, 2016 /CNW/ - Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced the launch of two innovative fertility technologies, Gavi™ oocyte protocol and Geri™ medium. Both products help to improve key steps of assisted reproductive treatment (ART) - an area where laboratory technologies play a vital role for treatment success.

The launches represent the seventh and eighth product launch in 18 months for the Fertility Technologies unit at Merck, demonstrating the company's healthcare strategy to deliver innovation through best-in class assets. Gavi™ enables clinics to preserve human egg cells, also called oocytes, and embryos at the main stages of ART, while Geri™ medium supports undisturbed cultivation of embryos.

"Undergoing fertility treatment means looking at a lot of individual variables to ensure that everything is done for a successful outcome. During this process, couples want to be assured that their healthcare providers have the right tools at hand to assess those variables and help them make their dream of having a baby become a reality," said Rehan Verjee, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer at Merck's biopharma business. "With our two new products, we provide laboratories with important instruments that support fertility treatment tailored to the clinic and to the individual needs of patients."

Preserving oocytes or embryos for future in vitro fertilization and embryo transfers by cooling them to deep sub-zero degrees is a key step in the laboratory. Gavi™ is the world's first automated instrument for this preservation technique, also called vitrification. With its latest product innovation, Gavi™ provides clinicians with added flexibility when taking important treatment decisions with and for their patients.

Geri™ medium was developed to help improve another critical factor for successful treatment, embryo cultivation. After fertilization, the embryo needs to grow and develop before it is transferred into a woman's womb. With the single-step culture medium, Merck now provides a way to support undisturbed incubation and optimal embryo development.

Both products, developed and manufactured by Australian fertility technologies company, Genea Biomedx, will be available in Europe, with Gavi™ also launching in Canada and additional regions to follow soon. They are commercialized as part of the partnership between Merck and Genea Biomedx that started in 2015.

About Gavi™, Geri™ and Gems™

Gavi is the world's first automated vitrification instrument, developed with the aim to achieve a consistent and standardized vitrification process.

Geri is a benchtop incubator with individually controlled incubation chambers per patient to minimize disruptive events to the early-stage embryo. It also incorporates a time-lapse camera to capture images of embryos as they develop.

Gems is the latest generation of Genea Biomedx's culture media suite for high-quality embryo cultivation.

Gavi, Geri and Gems received the CE mark clearance in Europe, and also the consumables for Gavi and Geri are certified. The three devices are not yet cleared for use in the USA.

Gavi™, Geri™ and Gems™ are created by Genea Biomedx.

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About Merck

Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life - from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2015, Merck generated sales of € 12.85 billion in 66 countries.

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck, Darmstadt, Germany holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160913/406891LOGO )

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161003/414692 )
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161003/414694-INFO )
(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161003/414693 )

SOURCE Merck

For further information: Dr. Raphaela Farrenkopf, +49-6151-72-2274


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