Five-month-old Abrahim Hassan is unique. The baby is the first in the world to be born using a technique that uses DNA from three people.
As revealed by the New Scientist the boy was born from an embryo in Mexico, where there are no rules on using the three-person IVF technique.
He has DNA from his mother, father, and a small amount of genetic code from a third donor.
The DNA technique was legally approved in the UK in February 2015 and was used to ensure Hassan would not have Leigh syndrome – a lethal disorder affecting the nervous system – which is carried by his mother. Hassan’s parents had already lost two children to the syndrome.
Three-person IVF has been proposed as a way to help those with mitochondrial disorders like Leigh syndrome have a healthy child. According to the New Scientist, John Zhang of the New Hope Fertility Center in New York used an approach known as spindle nuclear transfer.
He replaced the nucleus of a donor egg with a nucleus removed from one of the mother’s eggs. In the UK a different approach was legalised in 2015, in which a donor and the mother’s egg are separately fertilised with the father’s sperm before the nucleus is replaced.
Source – Wired.co.uk