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Research central to mitochondria replacement therapy plans

Fertility clinics offering a type of IVF that would prevent maternal mitochondrial disease being inherited will need to ensure follow-up research on patients and any resulting children if the government approves the technique, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority has advised the UK government.

The government is now considering whether to seek parliamentary permission to allow mitochondria replacement as a treatment. The technique, developed at Newcastle University by neurology professor Doug Turnbull and his team, creates embryos with genetic material from a mother and father, plus a small amount of genetic material from a female mitochondria donor.

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