A Unique Birth

genes-color

Camille Pigeon
Procrastinator Editor

Science proved we could be born with more than one mother and father by bringing into light a new, successful technique that involves three biological parents. This technique, known as the ‘’Spindle Nuclear Transfer’’, requires two women, one serving as the donor and the other as the mother, and one man, the father.

In this procedure, the nucleus of the mother’s embryo, which controls things such as the baby’s eye colour or hair colour, is extracted. Then, the mitochondria of the donor’s embryo, which is an organelle of the cell that provides energy and carries 37 genes that are given to a baby from their mother, is extracted and combined with the mother’s nucleus. Finally, the newly created embryo is now fertilized by the sperm, and then reinserted into the mother’s womb.

What makes this important? Well, the significance of this procedure cannot be overlooked. In fact, the reason as to why it is relevant today is because, on April 6th, 2016, a Jordanian couple gave birth to a boy in Mexico using this procedure. The mother’s mitochondria had a genetic mutation known as Leigh syndrome, a serious neurological disorder which affects the movement and mental abilities of the carrier, and is easily carried down to the baby. By not having the mother’s mitochondria as part of the embryo, the couple was finally able to give birth to a boy who was declared healthy.

Though some people may have some concerns, this procedure is a powerful discovery which has finally proved to be successful after lots of research, and helps parents give birth to healthy children using a donor. For now, the UK is the only country who has approved this controversial procedure, but for all we know, having three parents may become the norm.