Knoxville Embryo Reanimated After Quarter-Century On Ice For Record-Breaking Live Birth

A family in Knoxville, Tennessee is celebrating the birth of a baby girl – 27 years – almost to the day – after her embryo was frozen, according to WVLT.

The birth of Molly Everette Gibson broke a world record for the longest an embryo had been frozen before birth – a record previously held by Molly’s sister, Emma Wren Gibson.

Molly was frozen on October 14, 1992, then thawed by National Embryo Donation Center Lab Director & Embryologist Carol Sommerfelt on February 10, 2020 and transferred to Tina’s uterus by NEDC President & Medical Director Dr. Jeffrey Keenan on February 12, 2020. –WVLT

I think this is proof positive that no embryo should ever be discarded, certainly not because it is ‘old!” said Dr. Keenan, adding “This is also a testament to the excellent embryology work of Carol Sommerfelt. She is perhaps the preeminent embryologist in the country when it comes to thawing frozen embryos. And of course, it’s a testament to how good God is, and to His infinite goodness and love.”

According to the report, Molly and Emma are full genetic siblings.

When Tina and Ben returned for their sibling transfer, I was thrilled that the remaining two embryos from the donor that resulted in Emma Wren’s birth survived the thaw and developed into two very good quality embryos for their transfer,” according to Sommerfelt. “It was even more thrilling to learn 11 days later that Tina was pregnant. I rejoiced with Tina and Ben as we all anxiously waited for the arrival of their second child … When Molly Everette was born on October 26, she was already 28 years old from the standpoint of the time the embryos had been frozen. This definitely reflects on the technology used all those years ago and its ability to preserve the embryos for future use under an indefinite time frame. It also shows the reason the NEDC mission is so important, giving all donated embryos the best chance for life.”

Located in Knoxville, the NEDC receives embryos from all over the United States, and serves couples seeking to become pregnant from all over the world.