Dr Lieberman (b 1942), head of the IVF (in vitro fertilisation) unit at St Mary's Hospital, Manchester, and Dr Osborn, with some of the 'test tube' babies they have helped to create. IVF is the fertilisation of egg and sperm outside the body. The world's first IVF baby was born in Britain on July 25, 1978. This procedure is now widely available to women who, because of infertility or other problems, would otherwise be unable to conceive. Dr Lieberman says that 'The single most important factor in succesful IVF treatment is the age of the mother, that's followed by the duration of infertility. That more women are delaying having children has mitigated improvements in IVF.'
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