In what is being termed as the beginning of a new era in medicine, the world’s first baby has been born using a new fertility technique that used D.N.A. from three persons. U.S. doctors from the New Hope Fertility Center in New York attempted the unprecedented procedure to ensure that the Jordanian mother’s genetic condition did not pass on to the boy.
Under the controversial technology, called mitochondrial donation, the doctors took all the vital D.N.A. from the mother's egg plus healthy mitochondria from a donor egg to create a healthy new egg, which was fertilized with the father’s sperm, writes the BBC. The doctors decided to use the method as the mother was carrying a genetic defect in mitochondria, which would have proved fatal to any baby conceived.
The operation was performed in Mexico where there are no rules to prohibit the new procedure, notes The Guardian. John Zhang, who led the operation, responded to the critics, saying that “it was ethical” to save lives.
The U.K. legalized mitochondrial transfer in 2015 but no other country has introduced laws to permit the technique. The details of the birth will be presented at the American Society for Reproductive Medicine meeting in Salt Lake City in October.