Woman wins lawsuit due to ‘low-quality’ sperm donor

September 17, 2019  15:23

The IVF procedure with donor sperm for an American Danielle Rizzo seemed to be completed successfully. The woman gave birth to healthy twin boys and was happy for a while. Until the children began to show deviations in behavior. The diagnosis, however, was made quickly to the boys - autism, Medvet reported.

Perhaps, in search of the truth or in search of the guilty, the frustrated mother began to inquire about the clinic where she had IVF, and in particular, about other children born from the same donor. An amazing and very unpleasant fact was revealed: this sperm donor became the biological father of at least 12 children, and everyone had autism.

The disease of the children almost certainly appeared due to a mutation in the sperm of the donor.

According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), to date, hundreds of genetic variations associated with autism spectrum disorder have been discovered. In most cases, these mutations increase the risk of developing autism, but do not cause the development of the disease. In other words, genes usually play only a partial role in the development of autism, and the rest is determined by other factors: complications during childbirth, the age of the parents, and so on.

But in rare cases (2 - 4%), it is genetic mutations that become the main cause of the disease. As the analyzes showed, her children had two such mutations in the genes MBD1 and SHANK1.

Although most reproductive clinics check donor sperm for hundreds of genetic diseases, similar autism tests do not exist.

As a result, the woman sued the sperm bank. In the lawsuit, she did not claim the missing autism test, but claimed that false information was provided in the donor profile. For example, the donor did not actually have a higher education diploma declared in the profile, but there was a diagnosis of ADHD, which was modestly silent in the profile. Danielle Rizzo won the lawsuit for $ 250,000.

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