Chinese scientists hope to soon be the first to use the CRISPR gene editing technique on human patients. They aim to help people with lung disease that does not respond to typical therapies like chemotherapy and radiation.
Nature reports that the team, led by Lu You, an oncologist at Sichuan University's West China Hospital in Chengdu, aims to use cells edited by the CRISPR technology in people, this August. The patient trial obtained approval from a review board at the hospital on July 6. That review process took a lot of time, Lu told Nature. "There was a lot of back and forth," he said.
A U.S. team has applied to treat humans with CRISPR, and their proposal has passed the first regulatory hurdle with the NIH. They await a second go-ahead from the FDA, but hope to start their trial by year's end.