Gene Therapy

Topics: Genetics, Genetic disorder, Disease Pages: 3 (1001 words) Published: March 3, 2013
Ashanti DeSilva was a four-year old girl, when she was born with a rare genetic disorder known as Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID). She was diagnosed with a disease which caused the depletion of white-blood cells, hence making her immune system exposed to infections and other diseases. The doctors could not find any treatment for her. They had to resolve to a new field of medicine known as Gene Therapy. At the beginning her parents didn’t want to execute the operation, but since they had no choice, they dah to og ahead with the treatment to save their child’s life. Today she’s living a healthy life and is attending college. Since then Gene Therapy has become the solution to genetic disorders. What is human gene therapy? Human gene therapy is a procedure that is being used in an attempt to treat genetic and other diseases. Many ethical, social and safety concerns are being raised on the use of human genetic engineering. Gene therapy techniques will introduce copies of a "healthy" gene into cells of the body. The disease will be controlled if the introduced genes work normally. This is called somatic gene therapy because it introduces the gene into a somatic or body cell. Any cells that could divide to form sperms or eggs will not have genes introduced into them through somatic gene therapy. The insertion of a single gene into the somatic cells of an individual with a life threatening genetic disease is the somatic cell gene therapy. This type of therapy is intended solely to eliminate the clinical consequences of the disease. Future generations shouldn't have any problems because the inserted gene is not passed down to them. Germinal gene therapy, involves the insertions of a healthy gene into the fertilized egg of an animal that has a specific genetic defect. This has been performed successfully in several animal studies. The new gene is obtained in every cell in the body including reproductive cells. There are three overwhelming technical problems that...
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