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FDA slams doctor who created first ever 3-parent baby for continuing to promote the banned technique despite promising to wait for federal approval

Dr John Zhang, head of the New York City embryonic team, holds the world's first 'three-person' baby after the boy was born in Mexico in April 2016
Dr John Zhang, head of the New York City embryonic team, holds the world’s first ‘three-person’ baby after the boy was born in Mexico in April 2016

The FDA has reprimanded the New York doctor who created the first three-person baby.

Dr John Zhang made headlines last September after helping a couple with mitochondrial disease to deliver a disease-free child, by inserting their DNA into the egg of a donor.

The technique is banned in the United States, and Congress has even barred the FDA from reviewing proposals to test the method.

Since part of the procedure took place in Mexico, Dr Zhang avoided charges, but he was ordered never to use the technology in the US without permission, and to stop marketing it.

But now, the agency has hit out at Dr Zhang, claiming he continues to promote his experimental, unapproved, and unverified procedure despite promising not to.

New Hope’s website touts having achieved the ‘first live birth’ using this technology, along with other advanced fertility treatments it offers.

The FDA’s letter to Zhang cites several other marketing claims, including a reference to ‘the first proven treatment for certain genetic disorders.’

The birth of the boy was disclosed last September.

The mother carries DNA that could have given her child Leigh syndrome, a severe neurological disorder that usually kills within a few years of birth.

The experimental technique involves removing some of the mother’s DNA from an egg, and leaving the disease-causing DNA behind.

The technique could be used for anything – from avoiding disease to altering a baby’s appearance. For now, disease is the focus.

The world’s first ‘three-parent’ baby was created to prevent him inheriting…

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