Robert Edwards, the Nobel Prize-winning scientist who developed IVF treatment, died today at the age of 87 after a long illness.
Edwards earned the Nobel Prize in medicine in 2010 for his pioneering work on in-vitro fertilization (IVF) in the 1950s. The first test-tube baby, Louise Brown, was born in 1978 as a result of his work, Reuters reported.
More than 5 million babies were conceived through IVF and other reproductive technologies, with between 1 and 2 percent of children born in the Western world as a result of the technique.
Edwards started work in 1955, and by 1968 he was able to fertilize a human egg in the lab. In 1980, Edwards and his collaborator Patrick Steptoe founded the first IVF clinic in Cambridge, U.K.