Cryopreservation was once the domain of sci-fi novels and B-rate movies. (Think Encino Man.) But it's increasingly real, as the recent birth of a healthy boy from a frozen embryo created 20 years earlier shows.
The birth, which is reported in a study in the online edition of the journal Fertility and Sterility, sets a record. Until now, no embryo frozen for this long has resulted in a live birth.
Thirty-two years after the birth of the world's first test-tube baby, artificial conception has never been more popular or successful. Today, up to 3 percent of infants born in the U.S. owe their existence to assisted reproductive technology, or ART. The majority is overwhelmingly healthy, but new research from scientists at Temple University and other institutions suggests the technique is not without its long-term risks.