American Tina Gibson made history by setting two world records at once when she gave birth to daughters Emma and Molly. The latter was born on October 26, 2020, 28 years after it was frozen in the form of an embryo in 1992. And thus she became the “oldest” baby in the world, breaking the record of her sister Emma, who was born in exactly the same way in 2017, at the biological age of 24 years.
The most intriguing thing about this story is that their mother Tina, who cannot have her children due to infertility, is only 29 years old. In fact, she is only 18 months older than her daughter Molly and, as the woman herself admits, she still finds it difficult to grasp this fact. From the point of view of science, this is also an outstanding event that demonstrates the effectiveness of the technology of storing embryos with their subsequent fertilization of women in the very distant future.
All the care of organizing the birth fell on the staff of the National Center for Embryo Donation in Knoxville, a non-profit Christian organization. Here, parents with infertility are helped with IVF, but it happens that they can change their mind almost immediately. Instead of disposal, embryos are removed and frozen, and then stored at a temperature of only 0.6 degrees above absolute zero. The shelf life is unlimited, the cells are thawed only upon receipt of an application for re-fertilization.
It is stated that about 1000 births were carried out at the center with the participation of frozen embryos, most on condition of anonymity. At the same time, it is noted there that 25% of embryos did not undergo freezing and thawing, and only 49% led to the birth of children. The technology demonstrates good performance, but is still far from perfect. On the other hand, having a healthy baby 28 years after it was actually created is amazing attainment.