Unanswered Questions about Reviving "Old" Eggs
These are exciting times for reproductive medicine. New technology is expanding the realm of possibility beyond what was imaginable even just a few decades ago. However, along with new techniques often comes a new round of ethical questions.
article on AUGMENT, developed by OvaScience, a Cambridge-based research company. AUGMENT involves injecting healthy mitochondria—the cells’ energy providers—into aging eggs to improve their quality. According to OvaScience, AUGMENT has led to six live births.
In 2013, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) required that AUGMENT come under its purview as a new drug. So OvaScience stopped offering AUGMENT in the U.S., and simply went elsewhere.
Interviewed for the Fusion article, PFC’s Carolyn Givens, MD said she thinks the FDA did the right thing. Along with the FDA and others, she first wants an answer to an important question: Could this technique lead to genetic disease or mutations? Dr. Givens also raised an ever-present ethical question: Exactly how far back should we push the biological clock?