Three Parent Babies

Image Source: Guardian.

The Newcastle Herald reports that the UK is on the verge of creating babies with two mothers and one father in rare cases to side-step inherited birth defects:
Britain will become the first country in the world to create babies with the DNA of three people under government plans which could see the procedure offered on the NHS by next year. See your ad here

Parents at high risk of having children with severe disabilities such as muscular dystrophy will be offered the controversial new IVF treatment after it was given the green light by ministers today.

It means the world's first "three-parent baby" could be born in Britain by 2015, if detailed proposals for regulating the procedure pass a public consultation and are approved by Parliament next year.

Up to 10 patients per year are expected to undergo the treatment, which involves replacing a fraction of the mother's damaged DNA with that of a healthy donor.

The process avoids the risk of the mother passing inherited defects, which can lead to a host of rare and debilitating conditions affecting the heart, muscles and brain, on to her children.

The technique is controversial because it involves "germ line" modification of the embryo's DNA, meaning the third party's genetic material would not only be passed on to the child, but also to future generations down the female line.

But ministers will publish draft regulations later this year allowing the therapy to "high-risk" families after a previous public consultation conducted by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority last year revealed overall support.

The technique is aimed at tackling a collection of rare hereditary conditions which are caused by mutated mitochondria – structures which supply power to our cells.
See other reports at the Guardian here and here.

Image Source: Ezquara's Blog.

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