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Scientists at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Mitochondrial Disease at Newcastle University have developed a technique that lets mothers with genetic mitochondrial issues bear healthy children. Sometimes called “three-parent embryos”, the method replaces the faulty mitochondria in the mother’s egg with healthy mitochondria from a donor egg, to combine with the father’s sperm. Mitochondrial DNA consists of just 37 genes, which perform a quite separate function from the 23,000 genes that determine our characteristics: the baby’s nature will be drawn from its parents, the donor providing only battery support.
Some good articles about the procedure and the potential ethical issues:
Diagram from the HFEA