DNA test to ‘predict future fertility’

Test on ‘Fragile X' gene can predict how many fertile years women have left

Women concerned about their fertility will soon be able to find out exactly how many fertile years they’ve got left, thanks to a new test developed by leading scientists.

The breakthrough follows the discovery of a gene called ‘Fragile X‘ that indicates the rate at which a woman’s egg supply will diminish over the years. By monitoring the speed of the biological clock, the test can reveal how many eggs a woman has left – and give early warning of declining fertility.

If a woman tests positive, she can opt to start a family sooner – or freeze some eggs to increase the chances of conceiving a child later on, according to reports in the the Daily Mail.

Professor Norbert Gleicher, of the Centre for Human Reproduction in New York, said: ‘We can take an 18 or 20-year-old girl and check her Fragile X and make a pretty good prediction of whether she’s at risk.’

The state of the gene Fragile X can predict the rate at which a woman’s egg supply may diminish over the years, creating an effective ‘early warning system’ for fertility, according to reports in the New Scientist.

If women test positive, they will be given a back-up hormone test that can confirm that their egg supply is running out more quickly. Earlier this year, British fertility doctor Professor Bill Ledger said women should take a ‘fertility MOT‘ aged 30 to show how quickly their biological clock is ticking.

But would you take a fertility test to find out how many fertile years you’ve got left? Let us know by posting your views below…



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