Gene Therapy And Germline Therapy

1612 Words Nov 23rd, 2015 7 Pages
Good afternoon Mr David and class. Today the topic of gene therapy will be discussed, so to begin, what is gene therapy? Basically, gene therapy is the modification of genes to alter a certain characteristic that ultimately can cure a genetic disease. There are two types of gene therapy: somatic gene therapy and germline gene therapy. Somatic gene therapy is when blood cells are extracted from a person and a normal gene is then inserted into the defective cell. This does not prevent the disease from occurring in future generations because it doesn’t affect the sperm and egg cells, only the body cells. Although, this is a treatment that has to be repeated several times throughout a person’s life as the effects can wear off. Germline gene therapy however occurs in the reproductive cells where there is genetic modification to these cells occurs. Because these are reproductive cells that are being modified, these changes WILL be passed down to the next generation. Contrasting to somatic gene therapy, germline therapy only has to be done once in a lifetime, as it is permanent.
Gene therapy is intriguing to discuss and research because it’s untapped potential that it has and the ability it has to cure and eradicate countless genetic disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and even cancer! It also has endless possibilities that it could contribute to the health industry. How far gene therapy has come and how far science has come, for this to even be possible is…

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