John Zhang, a U.S. fertility doctor has started a company [called Darwin Life] with a provocative vision for older women: become pregnant by having their DNA shifted into a young woman’s egg.
Originally developed as a way to prevent women from passing certain rare diseases on to their children, Zhang says [his technique, called spindle nuclear transfer,] can also be used to create rejuvenated eggs. He calls it a “cure for infertility” and says Darwin Life will begin offering it to women aged 42 to 47, an age at which the chance of becoming pregnant declines dramatically.
The process is controversial because it is largely untested and because some consider it a form of genetic modification…The formation of the company is alarming some observers, who say the process is too new to commercialize widely and could create increased demand for donors to supply eggs.
Sometimes known as a “three-parent baby” technique, the procedure acts to combine one woman’s genes with the youthful contents of another’s egg, notably energy-making structures called mitochondria.
The cause of age-related infertility is still unknown, but Zhang and some other experts believe that faulty mitochondria are a reason why older women can’t easily produce viable embryos. That’s why Zhang thinks his technique of harnessing a young egg will help.
The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: The Fertility Doctor Trying to Commercialize Three-Parent Babies