A controversial fertility treatment which creates embryos from two women and one man to prevent life-threatening disorders is ethical, a report says.
Children born through “three-person IVF” would contain some genetic material from three people.
The UK’s Nuffield Council on Bioethics said the technique could free children from “very severe and debilitating disorders”.
The process takes the core genetic material from fertilized egg and inserts it into a “clean” egg. The intent is to give the zygote healthy mitochondria, the miniature power plants inside cells which are vital to their long term functioning. Some persons have defective mitochondria which result in certain genetic diseases, and this IVF technique seeks to overcome that defect. Approximately 0.1% of the genetic material in the new zygote would come from the third person.
The technique isn’t ready for use. It still needs safety and effectiveness testing. But the government agency which regulates such things will begin a public education and discussion of the technique in September.