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Inspiration for 'My Sister's Keeper' Speaks Out
Date:6/22/2009

Couple Wants to Promote Dialogue On Ethical Issues Raised by Novel, Motion Picture

DENVER, June 22 /PRNewswire/ -- The acknowledged inspiration for Jodi Picoult's My Sister's Keeper novel about a couple who conceives a child to save the life of a daughter with leukemia, is speaking out now ahead of the release of the new movie starring Cameron Diaz on Friday.

With the help of Denver infertility specialist Dr. William B. Schoolcraft, the Nashes were able to select an embryo that met two criteria: it didn't carry the genetic abnormality that would cause Fanconi Anemia (FA), an often-fatal genetic disease, and it was a tissue match for Molly Nash who suffered from FA. The selected embryo would later develop to be Molly's little brother Adam. The cord blood from Adam's placenta would be used for a blood transfusion that would save Molly's life. Later a second embryo from the couple would grow to become the couple's third child, Delaine.

"I appreciate the public discussion of the ethical issues raised by the book, and now the movie," said Molly's mom, Lisa Nash. "But it's important to remember Jodi Picoult's story is in many ways a worst case scenario and our reality was one of miracles and hope."

The Nashes were the first couple to use Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis (PGD) to create an embryo that could save a sibling's life. The bioethical issues raised by the case led to extensive, in-depth coverage in nearly every major media outlet in the world. The coverage caught the eye of author Picoult, who used it as a jumping off point for her novel, My Sister's Keeper.

"We stress to people that the book is fiction and that our family is reality," explains Jack Nash. "The reality is that because of amazing reproductive medicine advances, we have been able to have a family. Without the science, Molly would have died and we wouldn't have tried to have any other children for fear they'd
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SOURCE Colorado Center for Reproductive Medicine
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