New Device Delivers Gene Therapy Directly to the Brain
Using a new medical device, a biotechnology company is looking to administer gene therapy directly to the brain by overcoming the notoriously troublesome blood-brain barrier.
What's the Latest Development?
By using genetic therapy based on RNA interference and a new piece of medical hardware, a pair of biotechnology companies are working together to deliver gene therapy directly to the brain. The companies are looking to treat Huntington's disease, a neurological problem caused by the loss of neurons due to a toxic protein made by a tainted gene. "The idea behind the new treatment is to stop at least some of that protein's production so that it cannot damage the brain." The procedure would take advantage of a medical device already implanted in over 250,000 patients.
What's the Big Idea?
One of the companies, Alnylam, has just successfully completed a clinical trial in which gene therapy produced lasting results by removing protein deposits which can build up dangerously in the liver. "The positive results add weight to the notion that RNAi therapeutics could eventually help patients with a range of genetic diseases." Barry Greene, president and chief operating officer of Alnylam, said: "Today's platforms target the protein that causes the disease and bind to that protein. We stop the protein from being made in the first place."
Photo credit: Shutterstock.com
Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.
No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.
The Oxfam report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency."
- A new report by Oxfam argues that wealth inequality is causing poverty and misery around the world.
- In the last year, the world's billionaires saw their wealth increase by 12%, while the poorest 3.8 billion people on the planet lost 11% of their wealth.
- The report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency." We explain what Steven Pinker's got to do with it.
Moans, groans, and gripes release stress hormones in the brain.
Could you give up complaining for a whole month? That's the crux of this interesting piece by Jessica Hullinger over at Fast Company. Hullinger explores the reasons why humans are so predisposed to griping and why, despite these predispositions, we should all try to complain less. As for no complaining for a month, that was the goal for people enrolled in the Complaint Restraint project.
Participants sought to go the entirety of February without so much as a moan, groan, or bellyache.
- Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
- Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
- But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.