MP’s in UK vote to legalise three-person babies using Mitochondrial Donation Technique

Members of Parliament (MPs) in United Kingdom (UK) have voted to legalise law for creation of three-parent IVF designer babies using Mitochondrial Donation Technique.

In this regard, MPs in House of Commons during free vote, voted in favour of amendment bill to amend Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act, 1990 by 382 to 128 votes.

With this historic move, UK is now set to become the first country to introduce law to allow the creation of babies from three people. Now this amendment bill needs to be passed in House of Lords.

What is Mitochondrial Donation Technique?

  • It uses a modified version of In vitro fertilisation (IVF) to combine the DNA of the two parents with the healthy mitochondria of a donor woman. This technique was first pioneered by scientists at Newcastle University, UK.
  • This technique involves addition of healthy mitochondria from donor women to an egg from other women with defective mitochondria. Then it is fertilized with man’s sperm.
  • In this process, healthy mitochondria is passed to a child from the mother.
  • Advantage: It does not allow passage of defective mitochondria from mother to babies. Thus, preventing new born babies from brain damage, muscle wasting, heart failure and blindness due to defective mitochondria.

Mitochondria: It is a tiny compartment inside cell within the body that converts food in usable energy. It is also called as the powerhouse of the cell.

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Categories: International Current Affairs 2017Science and Technology Current Affairs - 2017

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