Celebrate fertility medicine Nobel

In: Uncategorized

5 Oct 2010

Robert Edwards, one of the inventors of IVF (in vitro fertilisation) technology, is a worthy winner of this year’s Nobel prize for medicine. Thanks to his efforts, and those of his research partner Patrick Steptoe who died in 1988, some four million extra infants have already been born to couples with fertility problems since 1978.

The Vatican has criticised the award as it views IVF as turning embryos into commodities. Evidently some Malthusians, those obsessed with “overpopulation”, were opposed to the early research by Edwards and Steptoe although, as far as I can tell, there have been no recent complaints.

For the more than 10% of couples worldwide who have fertility problems the success of the technology is no doubt a cause for celebration.

* 9 October update. For more on this topic, including opposition to IVF from the Catholic church and others, watch the report on newsy.com.