History of IVF and ART

Find out more about the history of IVF and Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART), both here and overseas, by following our timeline.  It's an easy and simple way to see how things have developed over time.

25 July 1978 1st IVF-ling, Louise Brown, born in England.  The reproductive specialists involved were  Drs Patrick Steptoe (gynaecologic surgeon) and Robert Edwards (PhD) who are recognised as the first to be successful, although others were also trying at the time.

23 June 1980 Australia’s 1st IVF-ling, and the 3rd ever IVF-ling, Candice Reed born
1983 Dr Freddie Graham started the first IVF clinic in New Zealand at National Women’s Hospital in Greenlane, Auckland. The clinic serviced the whole of the country – in the first few years, about 25% of people came from the South Island before a clinic started in Dunedin, and then in Christchurch in the early 1990’s.

24 June 1984 New Zealand’s first IVF-ling, Amelia Bell born

1986 The first embryos are frozen at National Women’s Hospital

1987 Drs Richard Fisher and Freddie Graham began New Zealand’s first private IVF clinic, Fertility Associates, from a house in Remuera in Auckland. The first birth from a thawed embryo was from an embryo frozen at Fertility Associates in this year

1991 Donor egg treatment was started in New Zealand at Fertility Associates

1993 The first IVF clinic opened in Wellington by Fertility Associates
The first births from donor egg treatment

1994 Fertility Associates introduced ICSI to New Zealand

1995 The first IVF-ling born in New Zealand as a result of ICSI performed by Fertility Associates

1998 The first IVF clinic opened in Hamilton by Fertility Associates

1999 Natalie Brown is the first person born from IVF to have her own child.  Her baby was conceived naturally.  Ms Brown is the yonger sister of Louise Brown (the 1st IVF baby) and the world's forth IVF baby. 

2004 The Human Reproductive Technology (HART) Act that provides for the regulation of procedures that assist with human reproduction was passed. Eggs were first frozen in New Zealand, even though it was not legal to thaw and use them for another 5 years

2005 Pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) was introduced to New Zealand by Fertility Associates

2006 The first baby following pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) was born

2008 1st IVF-ling, Louise Brown turns 30.  Two years previously, Louise had given birth to a son who was conceived naturally. 
The law is changed in New Zealand to allow women to thaw and use eggs which have previously been frozen for medical or social reasons.

2010 Fertility Associates 10,000th baby conceived using assisted reproductive technologies (ART) was born.
 The first IVF baby to be born in America gives birth to her own child naturally! Read an article that she wrote herself about her famous childhood and her baby son.

October:  British IVF pioneer Robert Edwards wins Nobel prize for medicine.

 December:  The law is changed to allow the use of donor eggs and donor sperm in the same cycle of treatment.
2011 March: In Vitro Maturation (IVM) is introduced in to New Zealand
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