Interesting piece on “Savior Siblings.” Would love your thoughts! Happy Thursday.
The method used at the U to save Molly Nash’s life is mainstream now, but the larger ethical issues are as urgent as ever.
Ten years ago a little girl from Colorado made medical history when her parents and her doctor at the University of Minnesota used genetic screening to create a baby that could save her life.
Now, 16 years old and back in Minnesota for her 10-year checkup, Molly Nash is unimpressed that her little brother — her irritating little brother — became a “savior sibling” by giving her his umbilical cord blood — the sole reason she’s alive today to back sass her parents.
Her parents, however, know what was at stake. Jack and Lisa Nash were offered a long-shot chance to save the life of their daughter and to have more children who did not have the fatal disease they both carry in their genes.
“I thank God every day that I have a 16-year-old to fight with,” said Lisa Nash, who brought Molly to the university last week.
When their story first became public, reaction from around the globe ranged from astonishment to horror and helped fuel the backlash against embryonic research. Molly’s doctor at the U, Dr. John Wagner, was accused of playing God.
Over the decade the ethical debate has subsided and the reproductive technologies they used to conceive and test their second child have become mainstream.
But Wagner and others who have watched the technologies advance and spread say the larger ethical questions raised by the Molly Nash case are more urgent than ever. They say government and professional oversight of reproductive technology is long overdue.
“The question is: Will you say no to anything that parents will ask for?” said Jeff Kahn, director of the university’s Center for Bioethics.
Read More Here from the Star Tribune