Does a Surrogate Mother Share Blood with the Baby?

Surrogacy is still a relatively new procedure and, as with all new things, you may have a lot of questions.  One of the leading questions that couples who are thinking of starting a family, having a child via in vitro fertilization, women considering being surrogates, and those who wish to simply understand the process often ask if there is a genetic tie between the surrogate mother and surrogate baby.

We are here to clarify the confusion and offer answers to these DNA-related questions.

Is the Surrogate Mother Genetically Related to the Baby?


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Common questions on this topic include:

  • Is the surrogate mother genetically related to the baby?
  • Is a surrogate mother the biological mother?
  • Is the surrogate mother related in any way to the surrogate baby?

These are just some of the questions that are asked concerning the link between the surrogate mother and the surrogate baby. Starting with the first question, the issue of whether or not the surrogate baby and surrogate mother have any biological relation. That question is solely based on the type of surrogacy that has been opted for.

In a nutshell, whether a genetic link exists or not is dependent on whose egg has been used in the process. It is not about who carried the child in their womb.

Traditional surrogacy involves the use of the surrogate mother’s own egg, which is subsequently fertilized by either the intended father or a donor in a lab. In this type of surrogacy, yes, the surrogate is the biological mother of the child and is therefore genetically related to the child. For this situation, this surrogacy is often very complex legally and emotionally at the same time. Additionally, it’s worth noting that where the law is concerned, this type of surrogacy is looked upon as more of an adoption.

In the case of gestational surrogacy, the egg and sperm used can either come from the intended parents or from donors. Therefore, the surrogate mother will not have a genetic link to the child. She has no biological relation in this case. The embryo that is transplanted into her womb is created via IVF.

The key takeaway here is that the baby’s genetic link is to whoever gave the egg and sperm not who carried the embryo in their uterus.

Are Surrogate Mothers “Blood” Related to the Surrogate Baby?


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Common questions on this topic include:

  • Are surrogate mothers “blood” related to the surrogate baby?
  • Does the surrogate mother have a similar blood type as the child she carried?

The questions of blood type and blood relations aren’t too difficult to understand. First, the child is only related by blood to the surrogate mother if the child was born through traditional surrogacy. This is because in traditional surrogacy, the egg used comes from the mother, so, yes, there is a biological relationship and, hence, a blood link between the surrogate child and the surrogate. By this same token, it can be said that the surrogate and baby are “blood” relatives.

If you’re merely curious about an exchange of bodily fluids between surrogate and child while the baby is still in the womb, then, yes, the two share blood relations while the baby is growing in the surrogate’s womb. This is why extensive screening is done to ensure that the surrogate is perfectly healthy before surrogacy begins.

If your question is whether or not the child and surrogate will have the same blood type, this isn’t always the case. Even biological mothers don’t always have the same blood type as their own children.

Does the Surrogate Mother’s DNA Transfer to the Child?


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Common questions on this topic include:

  • Does the surrogate mother’s DNA transfer to the child?
  • Does a surrogate mother share DNA with the baby?
  • Is the surrogate mother a DNA contributor?

The specifics of genetics can be difficult for some people to understand. But here is an attempt at simplifying things. Genes (which carry the traits passed onto the child) are found in DNA. Every person is unique and has their own DNA. DNA is a two-strand molecule with one strand from the egg donor and another strand from the sperm donor. When passing down DNA, the child only carries DNA from these two individuals. There is no room to add on more DNA.

If the egg donor is the surrogate, then, yes, she transfers DNA to the child and is genetically linked to the child. If the egg and sperm are both from intended parents then, no, the surrogate cannot add to or share DNA with the surrogate baby she is carrying.

If this is a bit hard to grasp, allow us to put it another way. DNA is not something that can be “picked up or transferred” once the egg and sperm have been fused. This means that a person’s DNA is set in stone and is unchangeable from this point on. Therefore, it doesn’t matter in whose womb the embryo is carried. The DNA is not going to change nor does the baby take on the surrogate’s own DNA.

Will the Baby Inherit the Surrogate’s Physical Traits?


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Common questions on this topic include:

  • Who will the baby resemble physically?
  • Will the baby look like the surrogate mother?
  • Is it possible for the baby to look like the intended parents?

Intended parents are always desired to know who the baby will look like, whether it’s the surrogate once gestational surrogacy is done, or if the child will resemble them.

The child is most likely going to resemble the two people whose egg and sperm were used to create the baby.

If we’re talking about the case of traditional surrogacy where the surrogate mother donated the egg, then the child is highly likely to resemble the surrogate. However, if the surrogate is only the carrier and has not contributed any DNA as in the case of gestational surrogacy, then the baby will have no physical resemblance to the surrogate baby she carried.

On the other hand, it is possible for the baby to look like the intended parents. This can happen if the intended parent’s egg and sperm are used to create the embryo that is then transferred to the surrogate’s womb. It’s good to also note that, while this can happen, it’s not a full guarantee that it will work out this way.

What’s essential to note is that the baby will resemble whoever gave the egg and sperm that were used to create them. It’s not about who carried the baby.

Team Up with Joy of Life – An Experienced Surrogacy Team

The surrogacy journey is one that needs support and an experienced team to work with. You don’t have to do this alone. Whether you’re intended parents or a woman considering becoming a surrogate, each of us here at Joy of Life® has been in your shoes before at some point. We are either former surrogates ourselves or former intended parents. For this reason, we here at Joy of Life® understand the journey like no one else. From the emotional, legal, and financial side of things, we can share this process with you.

Considering surrogacy? Don’t walk alone. Get in touch with one of our friendly members of staff today.

Joy of Life

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