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The Cystic Fibrosis Trust has announced further funding for the Gene Therapy Consortium (GTC) to support its development of a Wave 2 gene therapy product which uses a virus to deliver the treatment. Gene therapy treats cystic fibrosis by adding a copy of a healthy gene to do the job of the faulty CF one, and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust has invested in the Gene Therapy Consortium’s work for more than a decade, funding two innovative products – wave 1 and wave 2. Wave 1 of the Consortium’s work involves treatment using liposomes (a tiny bubble made out of the same material as cell membrane) to deliver drugs into the body without being rejected or destroyed immediately. In the case of this project, the liposomes deliver the healthy genes to the patient’s lungs, and the results of a trial are expected to be presented in October of this year.
Wave 2 of the work done by the GTC consists of using a virus to deliver the gene treatment to the affected lungs. The Gene Therapy Consortium believes this to be a potentially more effective treatment in the longer term, but before any new clinical trial can begin, the Wave 2 product must undertake extensive and length safety studies.This new grant of £142,000 provides further support to the Gene Therapy Consortium for this work.
Dr Janet Allen, the Director of Research and the Cystic Fibrosis Trust said, “We are pleased to announce further support to the Gene Therapy Consortium using funds restricted for this purpose by the Trust’s supporters. The Trust has invested in the Gene Therapy Consortium’s work for more than 12 years, and it has undertaken ground-breaking work to develop gene therapy as a treatment for cystic fibrosis.” “We are keenly anticipating the results of the Wave 1 multi-dose gene therapy trial later this year, and we are discussing potential next steps for the Wave 2 work with the GTC and other funders.”