Fertility Clinic Boss Likely Fathered 600 Kids

Bertold Wiesner secretly made 20 donations a year for decades
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2012 4:43 AM CDT
Fertility Clinic Boss Likely Fathered 600 Kids
A fertility clinic founder in London has been discovered to have fathered up to 600 children over three decades running the clinic.   (Shutterstock)

The biologist Bertold Wiesner set up a fertility clinic for high IQ donors in London in the 1940s, helping women conceive 1,500 babies before he died in 1972. But what he did not tell those using his clinic was that he was the clinic's major donor, likely making some 20 donations a year. The clinic's records were destroyed by his wife years ago, but preliminary DNA testing of 18 people conceived at the clinic indicates up to 600 babies could have been fathered by Wiesner over the years, reports the Telegraph.

In the UK, the 1990 Human Fertilization and Embryology Act limits to 10 the number of families one person can donate eggs or sperm to. Two of the men who were fathered by Wiesner at the clinic have led the charge to uncover the truth of the clinic. "It's rather uncomfortable, because artificial insemination was developed on an industrial scale for cattle, and I don't like the feeling of having been 'bred,'" said David Gollancz, adding he was frustrated to know he had so many half-siblings he would never meet. "I'd love to be able to hire a huge marquee and invite them all to a party." (More fertility stories.)

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