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Parliament praise for DNA campaigner Clare

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: September 05, 2014

By Helen Kreft

Clare Exton

Clare Exton

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A NEWHALL woman has been praised for her support of a pioneering fertility technique during a debate in Parliament.

Clare Exton visited the House of Commons this week to help brief MPs on the importance of voting for the legalisation of mitochondrial donation at a full debate to be held later this year.

Mrs Exton, who lost her mother to mitochondrial disease, was later mentioned in the debate by South Derbyshire MP Heather Wheeler, who supported the efforts, but critics believe it could lead to genetically modified babies.

Mrs Exton said: "We met other families with young children who had the disease, but in more severe cases. There were also researchers there.

"I had the feeling it was very positive and it was nice that Heather Wheeler mentioned me."

The new technique allows the transfer of DNA between two human eggs, which it is hoped would prevent a host of inherited disorders.

Mrs Exton said the technique would not have helped her mother, Norma, who was only diagnosed in her 50s, but hoped it could soon be eliminated if the MPs' debate later this year is successful.

Mrs Wheeler defended the new technique in Parliament, praising Mrs Exton's charity work.

She said: "She is a vibrant lady and was on a mission. She was the one who first told me about how tantalisingly close the opportunities for the new science were."

Mrs Wheeler said she admired MP Fiona Bruce, who has opposed the motion, adding: "But the big prize is the new science we have heard about."

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