Abrahim Hassan, the 3 DNA baby boy, was formed with DNA from three different people, through a revolutionary technique that combines the genes of three parents. The goal which has been achieved was to prevent the child from inheriting a fatal genetic disease from the mother.
Five-month-old Abrahim Hassan’s Jordanian parents, Ibtisam Shaban andMahmoud Hassan, were treated in Mexico by a team led by Dr. John Zhang of the New Hope Fertility Center in New York.
It happened that the mother of the baby carries genes for Leigh syndrome, a rare genetic disorder characterized by the degeneration of the central nervous system. The gene according to the experts would have proved fatal to the if he was conceived the normal way. More so, the family in question has already experienced four miscarriages, as well as the death of two children – one at eight months and the other at six years of age. This made them seek help at the fertility center.
The “three-parent” technique, known as Spindle Nuclear Transfer, was used by the experts to form the baby. The technique involved removing some of the mother’s DNA from an egg and leaving the disease-causing DNA behind. The healthy DNA was slipped into a donor’s egg, which was then fertilized.
In another analysis, the nucleus was first removed from the mother’s egg and inserted into a donor’s egg, after removing the donor’s own nucleus. Only then was the resulting egg fertilised with the father’s sperm. As a result, the baby inherited 3 DNA; from both parents and the egg donor. This technique allows parents with rare genetic mutations to have healthy babies.
This method has not been approved in the US, so Dr. Zhang reportedly went to Mexico instead, as he was determined to save a life.