Dr. John Garrisi
Dr. Garrisi is director of the Embryology Laboratory and Director of Andrology Services. At the Institute since 1995, Dr Garrisi finds enormous satisfaction from a scientific career at IRMS that allows him to directly contribute to the treatment of thousands of IVF patients.
“It’s a unique job in science. I am a scientist with a number of opportunities to do research both for the sake of knowledge itself—as well as for the benefit of patients.”
An accomplished and experienced embryology laboratory director, Dr. Garrisi was responsible for oversight of laboratory services in the early years of the IVF program at Mount Sinai Medical Center, when it was the largest infertility clinic in the New York area. During his 8 year tenure as Director, Dr. Garrisi was part of the team that first successfully applied the techniques of micromanipulation to assist fertilization in humans. Intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI), a technique that has led to successful IVF for human couples diagnosed with male factor infertility, was later derived from this work.
A well-known figure in the field of reproductive science, Dr. Garrisi has published numerous scientific and medical research papers, and has lectured extensively within the United States and abroad. His areas of interest include cryopreservation (freezing) of embryonic and ovarian tissue, assisted hatching, ICSI and the successful operation of the IVF laboratory at IRMS. Dr. Garrisi notes that his work, while highly technical, also involves a unique aspect of human contact:
“I focus on the needs of the embryos, and on what they are expressing in their own, very rudimentary way. Each egg or embryo is different, and each is treated very much as an individual.”
Dr. Garrisi holds a Masters degree in Biology from Boston College and a PH.D in developmental genetics from Cornell University Medical College. He explains that his position has enabled him to enjoy rewards unique to the field of Reproductive Medicine:
“The ability to help people have families, to look into the eyes of parents and especially the children that result from our work, that is a gratification that most scientists never experience.”