Campaigners supporting the call for funding of trials for a groundbreaking gene therapy treatment are delighted to hear that money has been secured to take the work forward. Trials will now begin in March due to a grant from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the Medical Research Council (MRC).
One hundred and thirty adults and children with Cystic Fibrosis will take part in the largest trial of its type yet, coordinated by the UK Cystic Fibrosis Gene Therapy Consortium
The Gene Therapy Consortium is made up of teams from Imperial College London and the Universities of Oxford and Edinburgh, Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust and NHS Lothian. The teams have been working alongside eachother for over decade to find a definative treatment for Cystic Fibrosis which over 9,500 individuals have in the UK and over 90,000 worldwide.
Cystic Fibrosis is the most commonly inherited disease in the UK. Patients’ lungs become filled with thick sticky mucus and they are vulnerable to recurrent chest infections, which eventually destroy the lungs. In 1989 it was discovered that Cystic Fibrosis is caused by a gene mutation on the 7th chromasome. This discovery and subsequent research offers real hope for the development of a gene therapy treatment and its this that the trials are aiming to push forward.
More information on Cystic Fibrosis and how you can help in the race to find a cure can be found at the Cystic Fibrosis Trust website.