First Clinical Trial Of “Three Parent Baby” By Embryotools
In 2016 Worlds first “Three Parent Baby” was born by making use of genetic material from three people. It’s a novel technique invented to refrain the newborn child to inherit any disease via his or her mothers mitochondrial DNA. Under this technique mitochondria from one woman’s egg is taken along with the nucleus of another’s, the combination of which is then fertilized by sperm and then implanted into the uterus. It has been a controversial fertility treatment procedure since then. It is also known as a “mitochondrial replacement technique” or “three-person IVF”.
In the latest announcement, a Spanish company – Embryotools have declared that they will have conducted their first clinical trial involving the three parent embryo technique to combat infertility. A 32-year-old woman has conceived under the same project. She is the one among 25 other women enrolled under the program for whom embryo has been successfully planted.
Co-founder of Embryotools – Nuno Costa-Borges stated that this could revolutionize the infertility treatment industry and may bring a new era in the field of IVF. He said that this procedure could give the patients chances of having a child genetically related to them.
Embryotools in collaboration with a fertility specialist at a clinic in Athens – Institute of Life. are studying 25 women under 40 years of age enrolled under the program. It includes only those women who have minimum two failed IVF attempts in the past. Since the procedure is banned in Spain the clinical trial was conducted in Greece after seeking approval from the Greek National Authority of Assisted Reproduction.
The research team at Embryotools via a technique called maternal spindle transfer to extract the nucleus from a donor egg and replace it with the nucleus taken from the intended mother’s egg. The donor egg thus obtained retains its healthy mitochondria. The remaining procedure remains the same to that of a general IVF process.
Earlier in 2015 UK was the first country to approve the usage of this technique but only in urgent conditions where the couples have a higher risk of delivering a genetically defected baby.
It is to be noted that this controversial procedure remains banned in many countries inlcuing the United States on the grounds that the DNA introduced in the embryo from the third parent will form genetic alterations that could run up to numerous generations to come.