First IVF center opens in Tibet

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Tibet's first IVF center opened on Friday in Lhasa, capital of the southwest autonomous region, and treatment will begin later this month. The center is affiliated to Tibet Fukang Women's and Children's Hospital, Lhasa.

The infertility rate in Tibet, which has a total population of 3.17 million, hovers around 10 percent. "Many couples struggling to conceive have already made appointments for consultations," said Li Jun, director of the center.

Li warned, however, that the plateau, with low pressure and low oxygen level, may pose challenges. "We will culture the ova in a pressure-and-oxygen-controlled environment," he said. Statistics show about five million babies have been born globally thanks to IVF. China's first such baby, Zheng Mengzhu, was born in March, 1988, in Beijing.

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