Even without drugs, nets or an understanding of what caused malaria, human bodies were still fighting against the parasite – and winning.
Today, human populations carry heavy genetic marks from the war with malaria. And it is the red blood cell (erythrocyte) that mostly bears the scars.
Determining the structure of the DNA was the beginning of the gene therapy journey.
Once genetic lesions for diseases such as cystic fibrosis and haemophilia were identified, the idea of replacing or correcting defective genes grew into what we now call "gene therapy".
The airways inside the human lung.
Cystic fibrosis is the most common genetic disease among Caucasians. Now scientists believe they have discovered the origin of this often lethal genetic mutation and how it spread throughout Europe.
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New research shows just 1% of E. coli bacteria's genetic mutations are lethal.
Genetic therapy might be able to reverse the harmful effects of sickle cell anaemia.
Gene therapy is allowing us to switch on natural beneficial mutations to counteract the effects of negative mutations in diseases such as sickle cell anaemia.
A simple solution to a persistent problem.
Ashok A. Kumar
Every year, 300,000 children are born with sickle-cell disease, primarily in Africa and India. It is a genetic disorder that causes some blood cells to become abnormally shaped. The result is that those…
A child in Senegal waiting to be tested for sickle cell anaemia - in parts of Africa up to 40% of the population can carry the sickle cell gene.
Genetic mutations that affect our blood cells’ haemoglobin are the most common of all mutations. It has been estimated that around 5% of the world’s population carry a defective globin gene. Haemoglobin…