Gene edited in body in bid to cure patient’s disease
6 OAKLAND, CALIF. >> Scientists for the first time have tried editing a gene inside the body in a bold attempt to permanently change a person’s DNA to try to cure a disease. The experiment was done Monday in California on 44-year-old Brian Madeux. Through an IV, he received billions of copies of a corrective gene and a genetic tool to cut his DNA in a precise spot.
“It’s kind of humbling” to be the first to test this, said Madeux, who has a metabolic disease called Hunter syndrome.
Signs of whether it’s working could come in a month; tests will show for sure in three months.
If it’s successful, it could give a major boost to the fledgling field of gene therapy.
Scientists have edited people’s genes before, altering cells in the lab that are then returned to patients. But these methods can be used for only a few types of diseases. Some give results that might not last.