Until recently, people thought that a baby’s gender was determined by the mother’s cells, or at least, it was thought that the cells coming from both the mother and the father determined the gender together. However, Allah gives us different information about this subject and reveals in the Qur’an that men and women were created from “the sperm put into the uterus”:
That He created the two sexes – male and female – out of a sperm-drop when it spurted forth. (Surat an-Najm, 45-46)
The correctness of this information, revealed in the Qur’an over 1,400 years ago was also recently scientifically proven with the development of genetics and microbiology. As a result of intensive and comprehensive research, it was found that gender was determined solely by the sperm cells coming from the male, and that the female had no part in this.
The factor which determines the gender is the chromosomes. Amazingly, only two of the forty-six chromosomes that determine our human structure are gender chromosomes. These two chromosomes are called XY in males and XX in females. The reason for this is that the chromosomes in question look like these letters. The Y and X chromosomes carry male and female genes respectively.
The formation of a human being begins with the merging of one of these chromosomes found in both males and females. If the X chromosome found in the female's ovum (and the female's egg, or ovum, has only the X chromosome) merges with the sperm that contains the X chromosome found in the male, then the baby is a girl. However, if it merges with the sperm with the Y chromosome, then the new-born child is a boy. As a result, the gender of the unborn child depends on which chromosomes (X or Y) found in the male merges with the female’s X chromosome in her ovum. However, until the discovery of the science of genetics, in other words until the 20th century, the belief that the gender of an unborn child was entirely determined by the female was widespread in many cultures. For this reason, women who gave birth to girls were frequently condemned. However, in the Qur’an, 13 centuries before the discovery of genes, information that disproves this superstitious belief was provided, and it was revealed that gender was based not on female but male chromosomes.