U.K welcomed its first three-parent babies

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U.K welcomed its first three-parent babies

U.K. confirmed the births of the first infants in their country conceived using the experimental method known as Mitochondrial Donation Treatment.

A breakthrough in technology has now allowed “three-parent babies” to be created using the combined DNA of three people.

The Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority confirmed that less than five babies had been born in the U.K. using the technique, though they would not give an exact number to protect the family’s privacy, ABC News.

Using triple DNA has been explored for years. The goal of using three DNA sources is to prevent mothers from passing genetic disorders to children while in the womb. The IVF technique uses tissue from healthy female donors’ eggs to create embryos free of harmful mutations that some mothers may carry. The embryos are made using the normal sperm and egg from the biological parents.

However, mitochondria from the third donor’s egg add a small amount of genetic makeup to the embryo. This has led to the term “three-parent babies,” even though biological parents will account for over 99% of the DNA. 

Britain has pioneered the MDT movement. In 2015, parliament allowed the procedure. In 2017, the Newcastle Fertility Centre became the first and only clinic to perform MDT.