Monday, June 19, 2006

Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | New embryo test to screen for 6,000 diseases

Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | New embryo test to screen for 6,000 diseases:

Ian Sample in Prague
Monday June 19, 2006
The Guardian

British fertility specialists have developed a powerful new way to test embryos for inherited diseases, offering hundreds of couples their first realistic chance of having healthy children. The procedure has been hailed as a big advance, boosting the number of diseases clinics can test for from about 200 to nearly 6,000.

It will allow doctors to test for the first time a vast array of inherited diseases for which the specific genetic mutation is not known, such as Duchenne's muscular dystrophy (DMD) and some forms of cystic fibrosis. Using the technique, doctors can examine every embryo created for a couple through IVF, and determine whether each is healthy and unaffected, a carrier of the disease, or destined to develop the full-blown medical condition."

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