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A Pregnant Mother’s Effects on Her Child with Donor Egg

Posted by: Santa Monica Fertility   •   Categories: Egg Donation,

While mothers who have gotten pregnant with the help of a donor egg do not contribute genetically to the embryo, the mother’s body and womb DO affect the embryo, which ends up having an effect on how those genes are expressed, ultimately having an effect on the child, especially in terms of weight and certain diseases. This is the idea behind epigenetics and some of the newest research that has been done on “nature vs. nurture,” showing that one’s environment does indeed affect the characteristics of that organism.  Not only does the pregnant mother’s womb have an effect, but her mental state, stress levels, diet, environment, activity and exposure to toxins do as well.  How does this work? Basically, epigenetic mechanisms create and add another level of information and instruction to the genetic information the DNA already has. In other words, the mother carrying the baby gives the instructions to how that DNA will manifest. Maybe a good way to look at it is that the mother’s womb and lifestyle or experiences are the “how” and the DNA is the “what.”

“Perhaps the greatest myth surrounds pregnancy. Many believe the uterus is simply an incubator. Nothing could be further from the truth. The most important aspect of all pregnancies – including egg donation pregnancies- is that as the fetus grows, every cell in the developing body is built out of the pregnant mother’s body. Tissue from her uterine lining will contribute to the formation of the placenta, which will link her child. The fetus will use her body’s protein, then she will replace it. The fetus uses her sugars, calcium, nitrates, and fluids, and she will replace them. So, if you think of your dream as you dream house, the genes provide merely a basic blueprint, the biological mother takes care of all the materials and construction, from the foundation right on up to the light fixtures. So, although her husband’s aunt Sara or the donor’s grandfather may have genetically programmed the shape of the new baby’s earlobe, the earlobe itself is the pregnant woman’s “flesh and blood”.  That means the earlobe, along with the baby herself, grew from the recipient’s body. That is why the child is her biological child.”- Freedom Pharmacy


To learn more about epigenetics, fertility and pregnancy, click here.


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