In Vitro Fertilisation

Department of Health written question – answered on 29th January 2015.

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Photo of David Burrowes David Burrowes Conservative, Enfield, Southgate

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 26 January 2015 to Questions HL4063 and HL4228, how the Expert Panel convened by the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) were assured that the children concerned were genetically normal; whether each of the mitochondrial diseases listed in Annex D of the Department of Health's consultation document Mitochondrial Donation is associated with an abnormal karyotype; and if he will place in the Library a copy of the correspondence between the member of the HFEA's Expert Panel and the Zhang research group.

Photo of Jane Ellison Jane Ellison The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has advised that the term ‘genetically normal’ was used in reference to the detail outlined in the Zhang et al abstract regarding the outcome of genetic tests, as follows:

“Nuclear genetic fingerprinting confirmed that the nuclear DNA from 24 and 29 wk fetuses matched that of the patient’s. Mt DNA profiles in fetal red blood cells were similar to those from cytoplast donor with no detection of patient (karyoplast donor) Mt DNA.“

We are also advised that all of the mitochondrial diseases listed in the consultation document are due to point mutations or deletions and thus there is a normal karyotype.

On the question of correspondence between a member of the HFEA convened Expert Panel and the Zhang research group, I have nothing further to add to the information given to Questions HL4063 and HL4228.

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