Genetic modification of embryos with infertility research purposes (03/02/2016)

Throughout history, many cures for diseases have been discovered thanks to science. In the field of genetics the progress has been huge. The next step is to be able to correct a mutation or alteration that could lead to a serious illness, as well as to find out more about genetic causes of infertility.

Throughout history, many cures for diseases have been discovered thanks to science. In the field of genetics the progress has been huge. The next step is to be able to correct a mutation or alteration that could lead to a serious illness, as well as to find out more about genetic causes of infertility. This can only be achieved by using embryos in an early stage of development. The UK has just given authorization to a team of experts for the genetic manipulation of embryos with research purposes.

Dr Esther Velilla, director of the Biology and Reproduction Service at Institut Marquès, says “good practice is required to carrying out the studies and under no circumstances these studies will lead to children à la carte –as most people think”.

The studies have to be performed within the 7 days of in vitro development and under no circumstances will be permitted to be transferred to women undergoing a fertility treatment. An embryo needs to be implanted in the uterus from day 6th of development in order to continue its development, otherwise it will start a process of atresia or degeneration.

According to Dr Velilla, “this type of research is necessary to keep moving forward. It only requires to be regulated and controlled properly by official organizations”.