Genetic affinity and the right to ‘three-parent IVF’
With the recent report of a live birth after use of mitochondrial replacement therapy, sometimes called ‘three-parent IVF’, the clinical application of the technique is fast becoming a reality. While the United Kingdom allows the procedure under regulatory scrutiny, it remains effectively outlawed in many other countries. We argue that such prohibitions may violate individuals’ procreative rights, grounded in individuals’ interest in genetic affinity. The interest in genetic affinity was recently endorsed by Singapore’s highest court, reflecting an emphasis on the importance of biological ties found across the globe. We apply that reasoning to make the case for a right to ‘three-parent IVF’.
KeywordsRights Three-parent IVF Mitochondrial replacement therapy Regulation Assisted human reproduction Genetic affinity
We would like to thank the following individuals for their helpful input: Isabel Faber; Sharon Kaur; Lee Tsung-Ling; Voo Teck Chuan; Tamra Lysaght; Ainsley Newson; Peter Braude; the two anonymous reviewers for the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics; and attendees at the 2017 Bioethics Public Forum on Mitochondria Replacement at the Science Centre Singapore.
This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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