IVF technique that cuts genetic disease

IVF technique that cuts genetic disease risk found safe

London, June 11 (IANS) A groundbreaking IVF-based technique that reduces the risk of debilitating genetic disorders from being passed from mother to children has been found safe, researchers have reported.

Published in the journal Nature, the scientists reported an in-depth analysis of human embryos created using the new technique designed to reduce the risk of mothers passing on mitochondrial disease to their children, which is debilitating and often life-limiting.

Mitochondrial disease is a chronic, genetic disorder that occurs when the mitochondria of the cell fail to produce enough energy for cell or organ function, according to MitoAction, a US-based organisation working to improve quality of life for adults and children affected by the disease.

The new technique, called “early pronuclear transfer,” involves transplanting the nuclear DNA from a fertilised egg into a donated egg, which contains healthy mitochondria, on the day of fertilisation.

Results of the study involving over 500 eggs from 64 donor women indicate that the new procedure does not adversely affect human development and will greatly reduce the level of faulty mitochondria in the embryo.

The results suggest that the technique will lead to normal pregnancies whilst also reducing the risk of babies having mitochondrial disease.

“This study using normal human eggs is a major advance in our work towards preventing transmission of mitochondrial DNA disease,” said co-author of the paper professor Doug Turnbull, Director, Wellcome Trust Centre for Mitochondrial Research in Britain.

“The key message is that we have found no evidence the technique is unsafe. Embryos created by this technique have all the characteristics to lead to a pregnancy,” Turnbull noted.

Once licensed, the new technique would allow couples affected by mitochondrial disease to have the choice of whether to use pronuclear transfer to try and have healthy children.

“Having overcome significant technical and biological challenges, we are optimistic that the technique we have developed will offer affected women the possibility of reducing the risk of transmitting mitochondrial DNA disease to their children,” said senior author of the study Mary Herbert from Newcastle University in England.

Leave a Reply

Please enter your comment!

The opinions, views, and thoughts expressed by the readers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of www.mangalorean.com or any employee thereof. www.mangalorean.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the readers. Responsibility for the content of comments belongs to the commenter alone.  

We request the readers to refrain from posting defamatory, inflammatory comments and not indulge in personal attacks. However, it is obligatory on the part of www.mangalorean.com to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments to the concerned authorities upon their request.

Hence we request all our readers to help us to delete comments that do not follow these guidelines by informing us at  info@mangalorean.com. Lets work together to keep the comments clean and worthful, thereby make a difference in the community.

Please enter your name here