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Tag: Gene

Gene therapy for rare eye disease set to be offered on NHS

Gene therapy for rare eye disease set to be offered on NHS

Health
Patients with a rare inherited eye disorder are set to be able to access a new gene therapy on the NHS which slows down sight loss.Draft NICE guidance recommends the therapy (Luxturna) to treat inherited retinal dystrophies. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence estimates just under 90 people in England will be eligible for the treatment.Drug company Novartis agreed a discount for the NHS on the £613,410 price. Without the deal, the therapy, voretigene neparvovec, would have breached the regulator's budget impact test.'Breakthrough therapy'Inherited retinal dystrophies cause the gradual degeneration of the light-sensitive cells on the retina. They are usually diagnosed in childhood.The condition causes a loss of vision which ultimately lea
Study concludes there is no such thing as ‘gay gene’

Study concludes there is no such thing as ‘gay gene’

Technology
There is no such thing as a "gay gene" - but there is a mix of genetic and environmental factors which influence sexual behaviour, scientists have said.Researchers examined the genetics of almost half a million people who self-reported on whether they had experienced same-sex sexual behaviour - defined in the study as having ever had sex with someone of the same sex. They could not find any patterns among genetic variants that could be used to meaningfully predict or identify a person's sexual orientation or behaviour.Their findings indicate that like personality and other complex human traits, the behaviour is influenced by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.The authors analysed survey responses and performed genome-wide association studies (GWAS) on data from more than 47...

Medicare to cover breakthrough gene therapy for some cancers

Health
Medicare says it will cover breakthrough gene therapy for some kinds of blood cancers, increasing access to a potentially life-saving but costly treatment that uses a patient's own cells to destroy malignancies. In a decision issued Wednesday, officials said Medicare will cover CAR-T cell therapies for certain types of lymphoma and leukemia. The cost of the treatments can run to hundreds of thousands of dollars per patient. CAR-T uses gene therapy techniques to turbocharge the patient's own immune system cells, reprogramming them to harbor a "receptor" that zeroes in on cancer. The revved-up immune cells are returned to the patient to fight the cancer. Medicare Administrator Seema Verma said the decision will provide consistent and predictable access nationwide for patients who may have n...
Scientists identify ‘jumping’ superbug gene resistant to last-resort antibiotic

Scientists identify ‘jumping’ superbug gene resistant to last-resort antibiotic

Science
May 7 (UPI) -- Scientists have found a highly-mobile gene that helps superbugs resist colistin, one of the most effective last-resort antibiotics. When more common antibiotics fail to stamp-out a dangerous infection, doctors have only a few options. The antibiotic colistin is one of them. Unfortunately, researchers have identified a gene that could soon render colistin unreliable. Scientists found the gene, mcr-9, while analyzing the bacterial genome of salmonella, and described the "jumping" gene this week in the journal mBio. "This last-resort antibiotic has been designated a highest-priority antibiotic by the United Nations' World Health Organization, and the mcr-9 gene causes bacteria to resist it," Martin Wiedmann, food safety professor at Cornell University, said in a news release. ...
Lancelets help scientists uncover the secrets of vertebrate gene regulation

Lancelets help scientists uncover the secrets of vertebrate gene regulation

Science
Nov. 21 (UPI) -- The research is clear, the physiological complexity that makes modern humans -- and other mammals -- unique from simpler species is a product of gene regulation, not genet quantity. But when and how did vertebrates and mammals evolve the kinds of gene regulatory mechanisms that made human complexity possible? New research -- published Wednesday in the journal Nature -- suggests lancelets, fish-like marine chordates, can provide an answer to the question. "If you really want to understand what makes vertebrates, mammals, humans special, you need to have this basis to compare them, evolutionarily," Ferdinand Marlétaz, a geneticist at the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, said in a news release. New genomic analysis suggests organisms that emerged just aft...