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Secular changes in human reproduction and assisted reproductive technologies


Saniotis, Arthur; Henneberg, Maciej (2021). Secular changes in human reproduction and assisted reproductive technologies. Anthropological Review, 84(3):359-368.

Abstract

Since the middle to late 20th century the majority of children born in the developing world have been likely to enter into post-reproductive age. Currently, child mortality is at its lowest level in human history. While more children are living to post reproductive age, approximately 15% of couples are experiencing infecundity. This is either a result of one or both members of the couple being infecund, or, despite both being fecund, the interaction between them prevents fertility for some reason. Assisted reproductive technologies have provided many infertile couples an opportunity to have children. Assisted reproductive technologies operate by intervening and manipulating gametic and intrauterine natural selection. This paper discusses the possible influence of assisted reproductive technologies on child development. This paper outlines some of the reported changes in children resulting from assisted reproductive technologies. Although, few people are either aware or care about possible long term consequences of relaxed natural selection contributed by medical intervention (i.e. assisted reproductive technologies) we have little understanding to what extent such medical interference may affect long term fitness in humans.

Abstract

Since the middle to late 20th century the majority of children born in the developing world have been likely to enter into post-reproductive age. Currently, child mortality is at its lowest level in human history. While more children are living to post reproductive age, approximately 15% of couples are experiencing infecundity. This is either a result of one or both members of the couple being infecund, or, despite both being fecund, the interaction between them prevents fertility for some reason. Assisted reproductive technologies have provided many infertile couples an opportunity to have children. Assisted reproductive technologies operate by intervening and manipulating gametic and intrauterine natural selection. This paper discusses the possible influence of assisted reproductive technologies on child development. This paper outlines some of the reported changes in children resulting from assisted reproductive technologies. Although, few people are either aware or care about possible long term consequences of relaxed natural selection contributed by medical intervention (i.e. assisted reproductive technologies) we have little understanding to what extent such medical interference may affect long term fitness in humans.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Evolutionary Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Health (social science)
Social Sciences & Humanities > Anthropology
Uncontrolled Keywords:Anthropology, Health (social science)
Language:English
Date:1 September 2021
Deposited On:02 Feb 2022 15:17
Last Modified:18 Jun 2024 03:36
Publisher:Versita Open
ISSN:1898-6773
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.2478/anre-2021-0019
  • Content: Published Version
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)