This truly unique event took place in 2014 at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Brisbane (Australia). A 28-year-old woman gave birth to a boy and a girl with the rarest genetic code, the so-called semi-identical twins. According to doctors, this is only the second case in the history of medicine.
When the expectant mother first went to the doctors, the pregnancy was only 6 weeks. After conducting an examination, the doctors told the woman the good news – she would have identical twins. True, the sex of the babies has not yet been established.
But what was the astonishment of the doctors when, after 2 months, another ultrasound showed that there was a boy and a girl in the belly of the expectant mother. But everyone knows that identical twins are never of opposite sexes.
“The picture clearly showed that both babies have one placenta and a characteristic arrangement of amniotic sacs, like ordinary homozygous (identical) twins. But the different sexes of the fetuses indicated that there was a unique case of the development of semi-identical monozygotic twins here, ”said Professor Nicholas Fisk.
“This is an exceptional case, the second in the history of medicine. For the first time, semi-identical twins were born in 2007 in the United States. Then they were two boys, and one of them turned out to be a hermaphrodite, that is, he had both female and male genital organs at the same time, ”says Professor Fisk.
To understand what is unique about Australian twins, let’s look at how twins generally turn out.