Dutch research shows children born using test-tube baby techniques have higher blood pressure and higher glucose levels in puberty than their naturally-conceived peers, the NRC Handelsblad reports on Thursday.
The research was carried out at Amsterdam’s Vrije University and looked at over 200 children. It will be published soon in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.
‘In vitro fertilisation can be as unnatural for an embryo as being exposed to a shortage of food or stress,’ professor Henriette Delemarre tells the paper. ‘An egg cell is fertilised in a dish with nutrients.’
The difference in blood pressure between the test tube babies and a control group was small, Delemarre said, but it was enough to increase the risk of developing heart disease in adults. ‘IVF is so accepted but we really know very little about its long-term safety,’ she told the paper.
Some 1.5% of Dutch babies are born following IVF treatment.
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