Mary meets Dolly talks about how IVF could have adverse effects on the next generations, more particularly on disorders caused by epigenetic changes, from a UK Times Online article.
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Scientists have discovered that the DNA of babies conceived through IVF differs from that of other children, putting them at greater risk of diseases such as diabetes and obesity later in life.
The new research could explain why IVF babies tend to be at higher risk of low birth weight, defects and rare metabolic disorders.
The changes are not in the genes themselves but in the mechanism that switches them on and off, the study of which is known as epigenetics.
“These epigenetic differences have the potential to affect embyronic development and foetal growth, as well as influencing long-term patterns of gene expression associated with increased risk of many human diseases,” said Professor Carmen Sapienza, a geneticist at Temple University in Philadelphia, who jointly led the research.There is a possibility that such changes could be transmitted to the children of IVF babies, meaning they could spread through the human gene pool.