Baby Born From 27-Year-Old Embryo Breaks Record Set By Her Big Sister
Despite being just one month old, little Molly Gibson from Tennessee has already made history for the longest-frozen embryo known to have to resulted in a birth.
The little girl could have been born years ago, but her embryo was frozen in October 1992 and remained that way until earlier this year, when it was adopted by parents Tina and Ben.
Tina was impregnated with the embryo nearly 27 years after it was frozen, and Molly set the new record when she was welcomed into the world in late October.
Tina and Ben are no strangers to giving birth to little record-breakers as their older daughter, Emma, held the record before Molly came along and beat it. Emma was born in November 2017, 24 years after her embryo was frozen.
The parents became pregnant with both Emma and Molly with the help of the National Embryo Donation Center, a faith-based nonprofit in Knoxville which stores frozen embryos that in vitro fertilization patients have decided not to use.
Families are able to adopt the unused embryos and have them transferred to the adoptive parent’s uterus.
Little was known about the viability of older embryos before Emma and Molly were born, and at first Tina was concerned that the age of the embryo would lessen her chances of becoming pregnant.
Dr. Jeffrey Keena, the centre’s president and medical director, assured the mum-to-be that age likely wouldn’t affect the outcome. There are still some unknown factors about the difference age makes in an embryo’s successful birth, but Keena noted that the two young girls are proof that embryos shouldn’t be discarded because they’re ‘old’, CNN reports.
Carol Sommerfelt, the centre’s lab director and embryologist, commented:
This definitely reflects on the technology used all those years ago and its ability to preserve the embryos for future use under an indefinite time frame.
Tina, who found out she was pregnant with Molly just days before the declaration of the COVID-19 pandemic, said their new daughter has been a ‘little spark of joy for 2020’.
The mother previously told CNN that she and her husband had struggled with infertility, and following Molly’s birth she admitted that she’s still shocked to be the mother to two children.
Every single day, my husband and I talk about it. We’re always like, ‘Can you believe we have not one little girl, but two little girls? Can you believe we’re parents to multiple children?’
You would think that throughout pregnancy that I would just be used to it, but I’m still completely blown away that they are ours.
Following Emma’s birth in 2017, Sommerfelt said approximately 75% of all donated embryos survive the thawing and transfer process, and between 25% to 30% of all implants are successful.
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]