Mitochondrial donation approved for clinical practice

Today, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority approved the use of mitochondrial replacement techniques into clinical practice.

Professor Sir Robert Lechler PMedSci, President of the Academy of Medical Sciences welcomed the outcome of today's discussion at the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority.

"We are very pleased with the HFEA decision to introduce mitochondrial replacement techniques into clinical practice and fully support their decision.

"For many couples, mitochondrial replacement techniques will offer the only chance to conceive a biologically related child, free from mitochondrial disease.

"An expert panel recently found these techniques are sufficiently safe and appropriate for clinical use in patients, and the HFEA will provide a robust regulatory framework for their use. We are also pleased to see that cases will be reviewed individually and procedures carried out only in clinics that are approved to do so.

"Medical science exists to improve lives. Today’s decision by the HFEA means this groundbreaking research can now be translated from theory into practice and transform lives in the clinic."

More details on the Academy position on the technique can be found in our response to a consultation by the HFEA in 2011, several statements and more recently in our response to the Department of Health's consultation on mitochondrial donation.

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