World’s first test tube baby turns 35

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With the birth of Louise Brown, huge controversy with the various religious leaders expressing their concern over the use of artificial methods in 1978 was noticed. The world’s first test-tube baby, now turned 35, has paid tribute to the fertility pioneers, who gave her and millions of others life, with the help of latest medical technology.

Louise Brown has been a reluctant celebrity since nine months before she was born, when the rapacious British media caught wind of the procedure and wanted to find Brown’s mother. “We were concerned that she would lose the baby, the fetus, because the press were chasing Mrs Brown all over Bristol where she lived,” recalled Robert Edwards, one of the researchers who helped design the procedure, for which he would win the 2010 Nobel Prize. “So secretly [fellow researcher Patrick] Steptoe hid the mother in his car and drove her to his mother’s house in Lincoln–the press didn’t know where she was.

Louise Brown, whose parents Lesley and John Brown had IVF, treatment, spoke about reproductive biologist Robert Edwards to the publication, saying that many people owe so much to his incredible work, and that of gynaecologist Patrick Steptoe. There are now thought to be more than 5.5 million IVF babies worldwide and, as she prepared to celebrate her birthday with a private family meal, Ms Brown said she hoped the public could now see the benefits of the breakthrough.

Louise Brown said that when she was born many people said that it should not be done and that it was messing with God and the natural reproductive nature, but this concept of test tube babies worked and was proven that it was meant to be.

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