Abu Dhabi doctors help Emirati couple conceive 'matching' baby

IVF technology helps deliver HLA-matched baby to be a bone-marrow donor to older sibling

An Emirati couple in Abu Dhabi, through the help of advanced treatment, conceived a healthy baby to help the older sibling suffering from Thalassemia.

Abu Dhabi physicians used the In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF) technique. The conceived baby was HLA matched to his sister, who’s suffering from Thalassemia and requires frequent blood transfusions; and is currently under treatment using stem cells and bone marrow from her young brother.

Mohammed Ali Al Shorafa Al Hammadi, CEO and Managing Director, United Eastern Medical Services that owns HealthPlus network of specialty centers, said: “This advanced treatment unlocks new doors to the treatment of many genetic diseases, noting that Healthplus Fertility Center in Abu Dhabi, with its highly competent and well-experienced medical staff and advanced technologies, offers technologies for conducting accurate tests on embryos during the early days of the prenatal development and before placing it back to the mother’s uterus, which makes choosing healthy embryos possible, and thus reducing chances of genetic disorders. It also helps with identifying the embryos that are HLA matched to their siblings in order to treat them from different diseases using stem cells."

Dr. Walid Sayed, Consultant and Medical Director of HealthPlus Fertility Center, and his team who successfully performed the treatment, explained that the couple came to HealthPlus Fertility Center in order to help them with their infertility problem. After performing the required tests and assessing the situation, the physicians decided to perform an IVF procedure. This treatment approach and technology is considered globally advanced and proven to be successful."

Dr. Walid Sayed added, "In the first attempt, and after the tests were performed in the lab on a cell from the embryo three days after the fertilization procedure, the tests showed that the embryo’s tissues were not identical to his sisters, and so the couple and the doctors decided not to return the embryo into the mother’s uterus and to repeat the IVF procedure again after few months."

In the second IVF procedure, several embryos were produced for the couple, and after performing the tissues’ tests, the doctors found that one of the embryos’ tissues were identical to the three-year-old girl who suffers from Thalassemia. Thus, the embryo was returned to the mother’s uterus and she resumed her pregnancy and gave birth to a healthy baby.

"The Emirati little girl is getting treated at one of the globally advanced medical centers in the United States with the use of stem cells and bone marrow taken from her newborn brother, and the initial results are promising," he further added.

Dr. Walid Sayed stated that advanced IVF techniques have seen a quantum leap towards increasing success rates, in addition to performing more tests on the embryos’ cells within the early days of the prenatal development in order to eliminate any kind of genetic diseases and to ensure the birth of healthy babies.

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