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The Hamilton Spectator
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July 7, 2001
A scientific breakthrough that can increase the chances of selecting the sex of a foetus has raised concerns about safety and possible abuse.

There are fears that the technology could be abused by people wanting to determine their child's sex for purely social reasons.

And eminent British fertility expert Lord Winston warned parents against using the Fairfax procedure, which he said could cause damage to the unborn child.

The new technique involves separating out sperm that will produce a female embryo. This can be done because they carry more genetic material than those that will produce males.

Other gender selection techniques are available, but this is more accurate, and does not rely on discarding already fertilised embryos.

US researchers claim their method is accurate on nine out of 10 occasions, and say that their technique could help couples to avoid passing on genetic illnesses, which usually affect only boys.

It is the contents of the sperm that decide whether a baby will be male or female. A sperm that carries a Y chromosome will produce a boy, while one that carries an X chromosome will produce a girl. Source.

Concern over baby sex 'guarantee'