new Delhi: Therapy that claims to revolutionize the world of medical science is Gene Therapy. The claims of miraculous results of this therapy raise as much curiosity, as much controversy and ethics have been associated with the use of this therapy.
Gene therapy is the change in a person's genes for the treatment of serious diseases and genetic disorders. In simple language, the technique of curing diseases by changing the cells that are made in the same gene i.e. cells, which is made by humans, is called gene therapy.
Work on rooting the disease
Gene therapy is used for some rare diseases and birth diseases. Like Thalassemia which is a blood disorder. Sickle cell anemia, other blood related disorder, and muscular dystrophy – contractile disease of the vaginal muscles. Usually, these are diseases that cannot be fully treated with medicines or surgery. Gene therapy works on rooting the disease because it is capable of altering the original gene itself.
By the way, miracle claims have also been made through gene therapy. For example, stopping old age, stopping the light from decreasing with increasing age, treating the fetus ie the baby before the birth of the child with gene therapy.
Gene therapy has been in operation in the US and UK for almost two decades. All the research and treatment being done on gene therapy in India has always been questioned, because the situation has not been clear from the government on the issue of gene therapy in India.
Now the Indian Council of Medical Research has released guidelines regarding Gene therapy. Under which it has been decided what can be done under gene therapy and who will be considered as GTP i.e. gene therapy product. Also, the use of gene therapy can be approved for clinical trials.
Restriction on genetic changes in fetus
According to the guidelines, treatment using nucleic acid in any manner will be considered as a gene therapy product. However, there are restrictions on genetic changes in the fetus in India. This is called germ line therapy. Somato gene therapy is recognized in India. That is, there is a ban on working on cells with diseases and genetic editing.
7 million people have rare diseases
According to the ICMR, about 7 crore people in India are suffering from rare diseases that are difficult or impossible to treat. The CDSCO or Central Drugs Standard Control Organization has considered such a drug as rare disease drug which affects less than 5 lakh people.
In the last three years, the United States and Britain have approved the use of many gene therapy products. These are the products that will work on the treatment of such diseases which till now are considered incurable.
According to ICMR, the market of gene therapy will be $ 250 billion by 2024.
According to the guidelines, treatment using nucleic acid in any manner will be considered as a gene therapy product.
Under the Gene Therapy Advisory and Evaluation Committee, gene therapy, research on gene therapy, products can be made or used on patients. The headquarters of this committee will be in ICMR, Delhi.