Sunday, April 4, 2010
A new report brings to light interesting data on parents' willingness to genetically trait select in the egg donation process.
Would people shell out big bucks for offspring with preferred traits? Yes. They already do. The evidence comes from an analysis by Aaron Levine, a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, in the Hastings Center Report. Levine documents what anecdotes have long suggested: Buyers of "donor" eggs offer more money to women who are likely to yield smarter kids.
Levine analyzed more than 100 ads placed in 63 college newspapers to recruit egg donors. Of these ads, 21 specified a minimum requisite SAT score. Half offered more than $5,000, and among this group, 27 percent specified an "appearance requirement." The bigger the money, the choosier the client: Above the $10,000 level, most ads "contained appearance or ethnicity requirements."
But the big story is SAT scores. "Holding all else equal, an increase of one hundred SAT points in the score of a typical incoming student increased the compensation offered to oocyte donors at that college or university by $2,350," Levine reports. When the ad was placed for a specific couple, the premium was higher: $3,130 per 100 SAT points. And when an egg donor agency placed the ad on behalf of the couple, the bonus per 100 points rose to $5,780.
Read more here.