Almost, two decades ago, a gene therapy reestablished vision to Lancelot, which is a Briard dog innate with a blinding sickness. This steered in period of hope and advancement for the field of gene therapy targeted at curing blindness, which was terminated in the 2017 support of a gene therapy that advanced vision in people with LCA (Leber congenital amaurosis)—a rare and inherited type of blindness that is closely interrelated to the condition seen in Lancelot. It shows the first FDA (Food and Drug Administration)-sanctioned gene therapy for an inborn genetic disease. The gene therapy, which offers a functional duplication of the RPE65 gene, has enhanced vision in patients, facilitating them to encounter the world in a new way. The research was published in the journal Molecular Therapy.
But the question is still about how long-lasting these developments will be and whether advanced degeneration of vision cells have been stopped with the therapy. The scientists from the UPenn (University of Pennsylvania) choose canines to understand more about the aspects that determine the result of gene therapy; and this time, they handled dogs at more progressive stages of the disease, stages at which human patients are more probable to be treated. They found out dogs that were administered with the therapy when over 63% of their photoreceptor cells were still active but nonfunctional had huge success.
Recently, the UPenn was in news as its study stated that taxing sweetened beverages by the amount of sugar might help in curbing obesity and increase economic gains. Taxing the sugar-sweetened drinks by the amount of sugar they have, instead by the liquid volume of these beverages, as a number of cities across the U.S. presently do, can create even greater health benefits and monetary gains, a research team concluded.
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