Advertisement

UK May Allow Mitochondrial Replacement

The country’s fertility regulator reported that the technique has “broad support.”

By | March 21, 2013

EUREKALERT, ODRA NOEL (http://www.odranoel.eu)

The United Kingdom has taken a step towards allowing mitochondrial replacement during in vitro fertilization. Today the Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority (HFEA)—the group in charge of regulating use of embryos and gametes in the country—announced the results of a year of discussion about the therapy, which could prevent children from being born with mitochondrial disease.

“We’ve found that there is broad support for permitting mitochondria replacement, to give families at risk of mitochondrial disease the chance of having a healthy child,” HFEA chair Lisa Jardine said in a statement.

The procedure works by moving the nucleus of an egg or of an embryo from a woman with mutations in her mitochondrial DNA to the cytoplasm of an egg or embryo with healthy mitochondria. The procedure has been tested in animals and in human cells, Nature reported, but it is not ready for use in humans. For now, it is not legal in any country.

About 1 in 5,000 women have mitochondrial mutations that could lead to disease, including potentially fatal disorders that affect the muscles and the brain. They are passed down from mothers to their children because mitochondria are maternally inherited.

Last year, the UK government asked the HFEA to review the procedure. Following today’s briefing, the Health Department now will decide whether to propose a legal change to Parliament, which would have to pass a new law, ScienceInsider reported.

The HFEA recommended that mitochondrial donors should be considered tissue donors, so that children resulting from the transplant would not be allowed to request information about their mitochondrial donor’s identity. They also said that researchers should keep track of and study children resulting from the procedure.

Add a Comment

Avatar of: You

You

Processing...
Processing...

Sign In with your LabX Media Group Passport to leave a comment

Not a member? Register Now!

LabX Media Group Passport Logo

Comments

Avatar of: Alexandru

Alexandru

Posts: 67

March 22, 2013

Please note two MISTAKES:

1 - Because mitochondria are maternally inherited

WRONG! Mitochondria are paternally inherited too, but only in the naturally born boys, because the geneticists do not take into consideration Adam mtDNA theory, that explain how Adam mtDNA comeback only in the sperm of naturally born boys.

2 - Children resulting from the transplant would not be allowed to request information about their mitochondrial donor’s identity

BIG MISTAKE! After puberty, the child in vitro made can marry a brother or sister in maternal mitochondria!

NOTE: Only in natural fertilisation, paternal mitochondria, Adam mtDNA, can repairs mutations in maternal mitochondria, Eve mtDNA.

Avatar of: scienceforall

scienceforall

Posts: 1

March 23, 2013

Short film with experts discussing some ethical considerations around Mitochondria Replacement ('Three Parent Babies'): http://www.closeupresearch.com/mitochondria_replacement_ethical_considerations.html

Avatar of: kienhoa68

kienhoa68

Posts: 33

March 28, 2013

Ridding the world of inheritable disorders, some of which, we created. By whatever method we achieve it, the benefit will be considerable.

Follow The Scientist

icon-facebook icon-linkedin icon-twitter icon-vimeo icon-youtube
Advertisement

Stay Connected with The Scientist

  • icon-facebook The Scientist Magazine
  • icon-facebook The Scientist Careers
  • icon-facebook Neuroscience Research Techniques
  • icon-facebook Genetic Research Techniques
  • icon-facebook Cell Culture Techniques
  • icon-facebook Microbiology and Immunology
  • icon-facebook Cancer Research and Technology
  • icon-facebook Stem Cell and Regenerative Science
Advertisement
Hamamatsu
Hamamatsu
Advertisement
The Scientist
The Scientist
Life Technologies