LONDON (AP) — Britain’s fertility regulator on Wednesday confirmed the births of the U.K.’s first babies created using an experimental technique combining DNA from three people, an effort to prevent the children from inheriting rare genetic diseases.
The Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority said fewer than five babies have been born this way in the U.K. but did not provide further details to protect the families’ identities. The news was first reported by the Guardian newspaper.
In 2015, the U.K. became the first country to adopt legislation regulating methods to help prevent women with faulty mitochondria — the energy source in a cell — from passing defects on to their babies. The world’s first baby born using the technique was reported in the U.S. in 2016.
The genetic defects can result in diseases such as muscular dystrophy, epilepsy, heart problems and intellectual disabilities. About one in 200 children in Britain is born with a mitochondrial disorder. To date, 32 patients have been authorized to receive such treatment.
1st babies born in Britain using DNA from 3 people | AP News1st babies born in Britain using DNA from 3 people | AP News