An Irish couple, who attended the Cork Fertility Centre, have become the first in the world to undergo a procedure to ensure their unborn child will not suffer from a rare genetic condition.

The parents are both carriers of the gene which causes mucolipidosis and were at risk of passing the severe disease onto their child.

The procedure which employed a groundbreaking technique ensured that the couple's child, who is due in March, would not be affected by the condition.

According to Dr. John Waterstone, a medical director at the centre, without the procedure the couple had a one-in-four chance of delivering a baby affected by the condition.

Individuals who suffer from the metabolic disorder often don't survive past childhood.

The procedure, which checked the genes of the unborn child, concluded that the infant is unaffected by the condition and the centre asserted that the pregnancy is the first in the world to report successful pre-implantation genetic diagnosis.

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