Society Magazine

First Baby in Europe Born Free from 200 Genetic Disorders

Posted on the 18 May 2015 by 72point @72hub
First Baby in Europe born free from 200 Genetic Disorders

NEWS COPY - By Virginia Newman

A British baby boy is the first tot in Europe to be born free from a list of devastating genetic disorders - thanks to groundbreaking IVF treatment.

Five-month-old Lucas Neagu had a high chance of inheriting a muscle weakening disease which runs in his family.

But his parents underwent pioneering embryo screening treatment meaning he will never suffer from the condition and 200 other genetic disorders.

Mum Carmen Neagu, 27, saw her father suffer with Charcot-Marie-Tooth(CMT) disease and was worried Lucas would inherit it after being told he had a 50 per cent chance of developing it if she conceived naturally.

But Carmen and husband Gabriel, 31, were selected to be the first couple to receive the new treatment at a London clinic.

The specialist procedure selected out around 200 genetic conditions from the embryos including Down's Syndrome.

After undergoing the treatment Lucas was born perfectly healthy at Southend General Hospital last December.

Carmen, a recruitment consultant, from Westcliffe, Essex, said: "Lucas is a very happy baby.

"I will tell him he definitely wasn't an accident, we wanted him and we did everything to make him just as perfect as he is.

"I didn't want to have a child with CMT.

"I would rather have adopted or not had a child than them have this condition.

"I knew I did not want to have a baby and make them go through what my dad used to.

"I felt if there was an option then I would take it.

"I happened to be the right person at the right time to have this treatment.

"I had every confidence in the doctors. They are amazing and they did a wonderful job."

(Embed Code: <iframe width="560″ height="315″ src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ExibDmQGGM0″ frameborder="0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>)

Carmen also suffers with CMT but only suffers mild symptoms.

Doctors told her if she conceived naturally she could only have a test for the condition at 16 weeks and would have to decide whether to have a termination.

She added: "It is one thing choosing between embryos but choosing whether to keep a baby with a heart beat - I wouldn't have been able to say no.

"I could not have said I wanted to terminate the pregnancy."

Carmen's father Doru, who worked in IT, died seven years ago aged in his mid 50s.

CMT is a group of inherited conditions that damage the peripheral nerves.

The progressive conditions cause muscle wasting and numbness in the feet, ankles, legs and hands.

Carmen said: "My dad was very smart but in the last seven years of his life he was rejected from jobs because the condition affected his hands and he couldn't walk unaided.

"People would only see him for what he was on the outside.

"I think my dad would be so proud. My mum said to me my dad would have been very happy.

"All he ever wanted was to be normal."

Around one in 2,500 people in the UK have CMT and there is currently no cure.

The treatment Karyomapping was pioneered by fertility doctors at the Centre for Reproductive and Genetic Health in London.

It is thought a genetics laboratory in America also had success with Karyomapping in January this year, but the date of birth and identity of the child have not been released.

Previous forms of pre-implantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) have been time-consuming and costly.

But Karyomapping takes less than a fortnight of laboratory work and is able to detect more than 200 disorders.

Carmen and Gabriel's treatment began in London in December 2013 and Lucas was born just a year later on December 19, 2014, weighing 7lbs 6oz.

Experts took DNA swabs from the couple and compared gene sequences at 300,000 different points of the chromosomes.

They were able to work out which section of the genetic code was defective and therefore responsible for the condition.

The embryos were then tested to check which one were free of the genetic conditions.

Using only the clear embryos the couple had a normal IVF cycle at Southend Hospital, paid for by the NHS, and Carmen got pregnant on their first attempt.

The couple, originally from Romania, froze two other embryos during the first round of IVF and hope to have more children in the future.

University graduates Carmen and Gabriel, work works in IT, have lived and worked in the UK for five years.

Karen Butcher, chief operating officer at charity, CMT UK, said: "The clinic are offering this new technique of PGD, known as karyomapping for a range of genetic disorders and it's coincidental that the first baby to be successfully born from this process happens to have CMT.

"The process is significant because it dramatically reduces the time it takes to determine which embryos carry the gene, and which don't.

"As a charity, we believe in parents having informed choices - whether that is to risk having a child with CMT regardless of the likelihood OF passing the genes on, as many of us have done, or to not have children at all, or now, to undergo PGD to prevent the child being affected.

And she added she did not think this process would lead to 'designer babies'.

She said: "The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority carefully control PGD across all the conditions it's available for.

"And in any case, this particular form, karyomapping, maps abnormalities in the chromosome patterns of the parents, rather than looking for individual genes.

"To create a designer baby, say with blond hair, blue eyes and no predisposition to any disease, would require gene mapping beyond what is currently possible.

"Families who choose to undergo PGD have to have careful genetic assessment, and also have counselling to ensure that they understand the ramifications of the process.

First Baby in Europe born free from 200 Genetic Disorders

ENDS


First Baby in Europe born free from 200 Genetic Disorders
First Baby in Europe born free from 200 Genetic Disorders
First Baby in Europe born free from 200 Genetic Disorders


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Regulatory Failure

    Regulatory Failure

    When we think of the issues of health and safety that exist in a modern complex economy, it is impossible to imagine that these social goods will be produced... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Dlittle30
    SOCIETY
  • Is Bulk Hand-Regging Domains Worth the Time and Money Invested?

    Bulk Hand-Regging Domains Worth Time Money Invested?

    From Ali Zandi to Josh E to Rick Schwartz, it’s alway interesting and entertaining to watch industry vets do their thing — especially when the topic is hand... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Worldwide
    BUSINESS, TECH
  • Video: Spring Flooding in Yosemite National Park

    Video: Spring Flooding Yosemite National Park

    Heavy rains and rapid snow melt off have hit Yosemite National Park hard this spring. The park has had some of its more popular and iconic places closed due to... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Kungfujedi
    OUTDOORS
  • The Verdi Project: Rigoletto

    Verdi Project: Rigoletto

    In which our composer creates a sensation and changes the world of opera, forever. by Paul J. Pelkonen Tito Gobbi (with Renata Scotto) looking suitably... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Superconductor
    CULTURE, THEATRE & OPERA
  • the Ship is Sinking

    Mishpacha Magazine (Hebrew edition) has been running an initiative recently promoting new young couples in the Haredi community take on their own mortgages... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Gldmeier
    RELIGION, SOCIETY, SPIRITUALITY
  • Flower Power: Beyond the Beauty

    If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.” – Lord Buddha. Life is a journey that is full of special moments; like... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Meet Rv
  • Dress To Impress! 5 Dresses For Your First Date

    Dress Impress! Dresses Your First Date

    Are you looking to make a great first impression on a new man when you show up for your first date with him? Are you conflicted as to how to dress, what... Read more

    The 23 April 2018 by   Meet Rv

Magazine