Volume 16 | Issue 13 | 12 | Jun. 24, 2002

Psst! Gene Therapy Research Lives

COVER STORY | Progress registers experiment by experiment, trial by trial | By Josh P. Roberts

Image: Getty Images

In 1990, three men--W. French Anderson, R. Michael Blaese, and Kenneth Culver--led a trial in which the genetically corrected adenosine deaminase (ADA) T cells, belonging to a 4-year-old girl, were returned to her.1 Today, the 16-year-old teenager is alive and well.

It took another decade or so for any accomplishments as dramatic as that first trial to be reported, due in part to a relatively empty toolkit. In April, following a trial of gene therapy that occurred two years prior, French researchers announced that the immune systems of several children severely affected with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) were nearly normal, and that no supplementary therapies were...

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