ISIDA team`s stories
Yulia KREMENSKA, Molecular Biologist, PhD, defended her doctoral thesis at the University of Tokyo (Japan).
Embryologist in ISIDA Clinic, Medical Professional with extensive experience of cooperation with the leading scientific and practical centers both in Ukraine and worldwide.
- Yulia, please tell us what made you choose such a highly responsible profession which requires great knowledge and experience?
- My parents are doctors; however, medicine was not something I settled on right away. Talking about his work, my father kept saying that you have to love people in order to become a true medical professional. Yet, when I was a kid, I thought there was nothing better than tinkering around with the animals and took major interest in biology. Working with animals brought me closer to the medicine eventually. As a matter of fact, many scientific discoveries, practical solutions and methodological projects that are of great importance for the human kind became possible thanks to the animal research.
- Your education helps you in your work, doesn’t it?
- It so happened that I had been studying a lot. Having entered the University of Tokyo, I received the grant from the Japanese Government. I have got my postgraduate degree and worked in the high-profile scientific center for quite some time. I consider myself very fortunate to have got a chance to study and work there since I was able to learn everything there is to learn at the University of Tokyo! I returned to Ukraine after that. I was lucky enough to participate in the creation of cytogenetic laboratory, where the most advanced methods of preimplantation and prenatal diagnostics were developed. Today, the laboratory is recognized as Ukraine’s gold standard.
- But you were not resting on your laurels, were you?
- No, I was not. At some point, I have realized that I needed to keep moving forward, so I left for Singapore. I had been working for a distinguished A'STAR, the Agency for Science, Technology and Research for three years. It is a complex of universities and institutes, which brings together professors and researchers, including Nobel Laureates from all over the globe. At the premises of the state-of-the-art laboratories, researching and educational activities are carried out. This way, A'STAR becomes a platform for interaction and exchange of ideas within the global scientific community.
- What was your major research interest?
- Genetics, molecular and cell biology. My doctoral thesis was dedicated to epigenetics, i.e. transformation of the single-genome cells into various cells in the process of human body development. In-depth research of this matter allowed me to apply cutting-edge techniques in actual practice. The world’s accumulated knowledge can also be used in Ukraine.
- Which of the areas associated with reproduction are the most promising today?
- Today, diagnostics which is performed before the baby is born and even prior to implantation of the embryo into the uterus is becoming one of the top-priority areas. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis using the next generation sequencing will be another actively developing technique. It allows receiving accurate information about all chromosomes and drawing relevant conclusions. It has been successfully used for the last 5-6 years and proved itself to be a very reliable and informative method.
- Who should explore possibilities provided by preimplantation genetic diagnosis?
- Couples with previous cases of genetic abnormalities in the family. This innovative diagnostic method helps make sure that the baby has no abnormal genes.PGD may be recommended to women who decide to conceive at the age of 36-38, since it is known that the likelihood of having a baby with Down Syndrome increases as the woman gets older. In a number of situations, pre-implantation genetic diagnosis also allows to overcome the aftermath of male infertility and prevent habitual miscarriage in women.
- How safe is the preimplantation genetic diagnosis?
- Biopsy is performed at the stage of the five-day embryo development. At this point, the cells already start to differentiate; some of them will then become the placenta, whereas the others will form a fetus. To carry out the analysis, the trophectoderm cells are used, i.e. the outer layer. The cells that will become the baby remain intact. This procedure is considered to be the least invasive and the risks are minimized. We aim to use only those methods that are scientifically and clinically proven to be safe.
- Your unique expertise is now put to good use in ISIDA. What do you think are the advantages that make the clinic stand out among others?
- Huge experience. Over the years of clinic’s operation, many people have been seeking medical help in ISIDA which allowed its employees to perfect their skills. The clinic strives to introduce the latest methods requiring monetary and human resources. Best practices and focus on further development open enormous prospects for ISIDA. This is a medical institution that is able to enter the European and global market, for the professionalism of its employees and the level of services provision in the clinic make it possible. I would be very glad if my knowledge and skills could help make ISIDA’s most daring dreams about success come true.