Francis Crick the founder of the secret of life said, “We used to think that our fate was in our stars. Now we know that, in large measure, our fate is in our genes itself.” According to National Library of Medicine, James Watson and Francis Crick discovered the double helix, the twisted-ladder structure of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) on February 1953. The breakthrough revealed how genetic information is passed from one generation to the next. Major current advances in science such as genetic fingerprinting, the mapping of the human genome, and gene therapy, all have their origins in Watson and Crick's discovery. Gene therapy is an emerging technology that can save some many lives in the future.
According to National Institute of Health, August 2013, gene therapy is an experimental technique that uses genes to treat or prevent disease. In the future, this technique may allow doctors to treat a disorder by inserting a gene into a patient’s cells. Today I will be informing you how gene therapy can save lives.
Imagine yourself living in bubble for 12 years, David Vetter; a young boy from Texas lived in a plastic bubble for 12 years. David was born in 1971 with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), and had to live in a specially constructed sterile plastic bubble until he died at age 12. Now, kids with SCID lead normal lives because of gene therapy.
1. Genes are building blocks of inheritance.
2. Composed of long spiral shaped strands of a molecule called DNA
3. Genes located in single file within the chromosomes
4. The genetic message is encoded by the building blocks of the DNA, called nucleotides
5. Gene controls much of body's form and function
6. The code of the gene determines genetic traits; gene mutation can result in a disease or physical disability.
Gene therapy is an experimental technique that alters genes to treat or prevent disease.
1. A defective gene can develop from change in the DNA sequence that makes up a gene
2. Gene therapy replaces a faulty gene or adds a new gene in an attempt to cure diseases.
There have been many advances in gene therapy today
American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy reported that multiple gene therapy strategies have been developed to treat a wide variety of cancers and other acquired disorders such as viral infections (e.g. influenza, HIV, hepatitis), heart disease and diabetes.
According to American Medical Association, the first successful gene therapy was performed in 1990
1. Gene therapy was used to treat a four-year-old child for adenosine deaminase (ADA);
2. On February, 2014 Scientific American reported that gene therapy shows promise for heart attack patients.
3. On February 19, 2014, CBS New York also reported that gene therapy could help cure or prevent certain cancers.
Gene therapy will save some many lives in the future. It may soon offer hope that didn't exist before. Gene therapy will prevent and cure thousands of diseases.