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Science in Brief

Gene Therapy Success Against Lung Tumors May Help Treat Other Cancers

August 29, 1996|From Times staff and wire reports

Texas researchers have destroyed or shrunk tumors in lung cancer patients by injecting the cancers with a gene called p53 that acts like a brake on the disease. The approach, the first demonstration that gene therapy may halt tumors, might work with other kinds of tumors.

Dr. Jack Roth and his colleagues at the University of Texas reported in the September Nature Medicine that the gene wiped out a tumor in one patient, shrank tumors in two others and made cancers stop growing in three more. All the patients eventually died, however, because the physicians were unable to treat their metastases in the preliminary study.

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