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22 June 2016Americas

First human CRISPR/Cas9 experiment approved

A US advisory panel has reportedly approved the use of the CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing technology on humans for the first time, as part of a study designed to target three types of cancer.

The experiment was proposed by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania to use CRISPR/Cas9 to make modified T cells in patients more effective in attacking the three types of cancer: melanoma, myeloma and sarcoma.

T cells are white blood cells used to rid the body of bacteria.

According to The Washington Post, the proposal was approved by the US National Institutes of Health’s Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee yesterday, June 21.

The trial will involve more than a dozen patients and will be designed to test the safety of the therapy.

The proposal is still awaiting approval from the Food and Drug Administration, which is responsible for regulating clinical trials.

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