Eng 2000 Artilcle - Gene Therapy and Children

Eng 2000 Artilcle - Gene Therapy and Children - Gene...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Gene Therapy and Children October 2007 http://www.kidshealth.org/parent/system/medical/gene_therapy.html Gene therapy carries the excitement of a cure-all for a host of diseases, the controversy surrounding the altering of  human genes, and the promise of a type of medical treatment most of us would never imagine possible. With its  potential to eliminate and prevent hereditary diseases such as  cystic fibrosis  and hemophilia and its use as a possible  cure for heart disease,  AIDS , and  cancer , gene therapy is a potential medical miracle-worker. But what about gene therapy for children? There's a fair amount of risk involved in trials of this kind of therapy, and to  date, only children who are seriously ill or have illnesses incurable by conventional means have been involved in  clinical trials using gene therapy. For those with serious illnesses that aren't responsive to conventional therapies, however, gene therapy may soon  offer hope that didn't exist just a short time ago. What Are Genes? Your  genes  are part of what makes you unique. Inherited from your parents, they determine your physical traits - like  the color of your eyes and the color and texture of your hair. They also determine things like whether you'll be male or  female, the amount of oxygen your blood can carry, and what your IQ will be. Genes are composed of strands of a molecule called DNA and are located in single file within the chromosomes. The  genetic message is encoded by the building blocks of the DNA, which are called  nucleotides . There are  approximately 3 billion pairs of nucleotides in the chromosomes of a human cell, and each person's genetic makeup  has a unique sequence of nucleotides. This is mainly what makes us different from one another. Scientists believe that every human has about 25,000 genes per cell. A mutation, or change, in any one of these  genes can result in a disease, physical disability, or shortened life span. These mutations can be passed from one  generation to another, inherited just like a mother's blond hair or a father's brown eyes. Mutations can also occur 
Image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern