In-vitro fertislisation (IVF) was, very appropriately, born 40 years ago today.
Lesley Brown, an Englishwoman, secured her place in medical history as the first female to become pregnant through IVF.
Ms. Brown and her husband had been trying for a baby for nine years, to no avail. Then, on November 10, 1977 -exactly 40 years ago today-, the miracle happened at Oldham General Hospital. Ms. Brown was successfully implanted with a viable embryo. Louise Joy Brown was the first human to be born thanks to IVF, weighing 5 pounds, 12 ounces at birth in July 1978. Robert Edwards, one of the developers of the IVF procedure, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2010. His colleague, Steptoe, was not eligible as Nobel prizes are not awarded posthumously.
In-vitro fertilisation would go on to become a lifeline for those women unable to conceive naturally. Over six million babies have been born thanks to IVF worldwide.
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