How can the viruses be used safely in gene therapy?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

Scientists alter the viruses used in gene therapy to make them safe for humans and to increase their ability to deliver specific genes to a patient's cells. Depending on the type of virus and the goals of the research study, scientists may inactivate certain genes in the viruses to prevent them from reproducing or causing disease. Researchers may also alter the virus so that it better recognizes and enters the target cell.

The answer is based on source information from the National Cancer Institute.

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