MPs have voted to back new procedures which allow the creation of babies using DNA from three different people.
Commons support means the UK has taken ‘the bold step’ step to become the first country to legalise the procedure and could see the first three-parent baby born as early as next year.
The technique prevents certain genetic diseases being passed from mother to children through faulty mitochondria.
“This is a bold step for parliament to take but it is a considered and informed step,” said Public Health Minister Jane Ellison.
“For the many families affected this is light at the end of a very dark tunnel.”
The technique would use a modified version of IVF to combine the DNA of the two parents with the healthy mitochondria of a donor woman.
MPs were given a free vote by their parties on the matter, regarding it as a matter of conscience, and the bill has been criticised by some church leaders.
382 MPs voted in favour and 128 voted against on the Human Fertilization and Embryology (Mitochondrial Donation) Regulations 2015 Bill.
Although having swept through the House of Commons with ease the bill must still be passed by the House of Lords before it becomes law.
Picture courtesy of Chesapeake Bay Program, with thanks