Three-parent IVF stops defective mitochondrial DNA

The purpose of three-parent IVF is to stop the transmission of defective mitochondrial DNA from mothers to their babies.

Children born after the procedures would posses DNA from their parents plus mitochondrial DNA from a woman donor.

  • Mitochondria are rod-shaped power plants in the bodies of cells that supply energy.
  • They contain their own DNA, which is only passed down the maternal line.

Faulty mitochondrial genes can lead to a wide range of serious disorders including heart malfunction, kidney and liver disease, stroke, dementia, and blindness, as well as premature death.

Around 6,000 adults in the UK are believed to be affected by mitochondrial diseases.