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Baby born from 20 year old embryo

pregnant couple

Well there’s a lot to think about here. The healthy baby boy was born in May to a 42 year old woman who had been trying for 10 years to conceive. “She has been going through treatment for a long time. She was a patient here in 2000. She is a persistent lady,” said her doctor Sergio Oehninger, director of the Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine at the Eastern Virginia Medical School. And as long as she waited, it’s nothing compared to the 19 years and seven months that the embryo was on ice. The previous record was a 13 year old embryo.

The announcement of the birth was published in the US medical journal Fertility and Sterility and naturally raises some interesting ethical questions and opens up all kinds of possibilities for odd speculative scenarios. Can you have your grandmother’s baby? Could you give birth to your uncle? Apparently, yes. Another strange twist is that this baby boy has a sibling born from IVF with the same batch of eggs -- almost 20 years ago.

The batch of embryos used in this procedure were frozen in 1990 and put up for adoption by the couple who no longer needed them. They had successfully given birth to child at that time. The embryos were available but not matched for 16 years. The woman and her husband who took the eggs thawed them. Only two survived of the five remaining. They were allowed to grow in the lab for a few days then implanted. Only one of the embryos survived the implant and made it full term.

Source: Fertility and Sterility, Newscore, The Australian


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