Would you genetically modify your baby?

By Maria Kyriacou

Would you genetically modify your baby?
Meet the family who felt chose to genetically modify their baby.

If you knew your child might be at risk of contracting a debilitating or painful genetic disease would you opt to undergo embryo screening?

A British couple whose child, Lucas Neagu was at risk of inheriting Charcot-Marie-Tooth (CMT) disease, decided it was the way to go for them.

Groundbreaking new IVF-treatment has meant the five-month-old infant is the first in Europe to be born free from the  muscle weakening condition and 200 other genetic disorders.

Lucas’ mother Carmen Neagu, 27, said she’d watched her father struggle with the condition, which damages the peripheral nerves and eventuates in cause muscle wasting and numbness in the feet, ankles, legs and hands.

“I would rather have adopted or not had a child than them have this condition. 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,” she said.

Carmen, who has a mild form of the condition, was told she could conceive naturally, have a test at 16 weeks and then decide whether to have a termination.

‘It is one thing choosing between embryos but choosing whether to keep a baby with a heartbeat – I wouldn’t have been able to say no.” she said.

Do you think the decision to terminate an embryo is less confronting than terminating a pregnancy?

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