A former leukemia patient who had his sperm frozen as a teenager has fathered a baby after doctors successfully thawed his sample a record 22 years later.

Chris Biblis was 16 when doctors told him that he needed radiotherapy that would leave him sterile and recommended before going ahead with the life-saving treatment that they put a sample of his sperm into cryogenic storage for future use.

Now aged 38, he is celebrating the birth of a healthy baby daughter, Stella, who was conceived after scientists injected a defrosted sperm into an egg from his wife, Melodie, and implanted it in her uterus.

The 22-year lapse between storage in April 1986 and conception in June 2008 is a world record, according to specialists at the U.S. fertility clinic who carried out the procedure.

“From my life being saved to being able to create a life, words just can’t describe where we are now,” said Biblis, of Charlotte, N.C., who has been free of leukemia since the age of 18.

“I’ve got this bundle of joy to appreciate. It’s truly a miracle,” he told ABC News.

The case is being hailed as an illustration of how far infertility treatment has advanced in the past two decades and proof that sperm can remain viable for decades if they are preserved in liquid nitrogen. The previous record was 21 years.

Click here for more on this story from the Times of London.