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DIY gene therapy? FDA is not a fan

This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

A few biohackers (fans of do-it-yourself (DIY) science experiments) recently designed a gene therapy for HIV. Not only that, they posted a video last month of one of them injecting it into his body in an effort to cure his HIV. Although this is not the first time that DIY gene therapy has been attempted, the publicity of this particular video may have been the seed that prompted FDA to issue a letter on their website…

The FDA does not mince words when it comes to this idea. They state in a letter on their website,

The sale of these products is against the law. FDA is concerned about the safety risks involved. Consumers are cautioned to make sure that any gene therapy they are considering has either been approved by FDA or is being studied under appropriate regulatory oversight.

If a gene therapy hasn’t been approved, it’s probably not safe. Look, you can do a lot of things at home… make beer, color your hair, refinish furniture, play fantasy football, bathe your dog, knit, build a life-size LEGO Batman or take on a fun papier-mâché project. But, one thing that you cannot do is edit your genes. At least, not until the FDA says that its ok.

Read full, original post: Many Things Can Be Done At Home. Editing Your Genes Is Not One Of Them.

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