Vietnam Time

12/20/2017 1:54:46 PM

Woman gives birth to baby from 24 year-old frozen embryo

(VNF) - A 26-year-old woman has given birth to a baby girl from a donated embryo which was frozen for 24 years - the longest ever frozen embryo to come to term.

When Tina Gibson got married seven years ago, the 26-year-old knew it was unlikely that she would have children naturally. Her husband, 33-year-old Benjamin Gibson, had cystic fibrosis, a condition that can make men infertile.

The East Tennessee pair decided they would eventually adopt a child instead — and that they would foster several children in the meantime, until they were ready.

Then, last year, during a break between foster children, her father told them about something he’d heard on the news — embryo adoption. Gibson couldn’t get the idea out of her head. She submitted an application for the adoption in August 2016, and by spring had three embryos from the same anonymous donor transferred into her uterus.

Tina Gibson, Benjamin Gibson and baby Emma

It was only when she was preparing for the transfer that a doctor and lab director explained the embryos Gibson had chosen could lead to a “world record,” she told CNN.

On Nov. 25, Gibson gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Emma Wren Gibson.

“People say, ‘oh it's science,’ but no I think it’s a gift from the Lord. It’s a gift from the Lord, for sure,” Tina Gibson told NBC local affiliate WBIR.

The National Embryo Donation Center in Knoxville, Tenn. — the embryo adoption program that helped Gibson get pregnant — said Emma holds the record for the longest-frozen embryo to come to birth, citing research staff at the University of Tennessee Preston Medical Library in Knoxville.

The embryo was frozen Oct. 14, 1992, when Gibson was about 18 months old, and was thawed on March 13, 2017, by embryology lab director Carol Sommerfelt, making it 24 years old, NEDC officials said in a news release posted to Standard Newswire Tuesday.

Surprised by the age of the thawed embryos, Gibson said in March, “Do you realize I’m only 25? This embryo and I could have been best friends’’.

Some experts say the previous record was set in 2011, when a woman in New York gave birth to a healthy boy born from a frozen embryo created 20 years earlier./.

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