April 25, 2013

Gene Therapy

TEDxUofM speakers Maria Castro and Pedro Lowenstein, medical researchers at U-M, have embarked on an amazing journey to cure brain tumors through genetic engineering. They’ve graciously allowed The Ann Magazine to follow their work over the next few months, giving readers an inside look at their successes and failures and introducing some of the patients who have volunteered to participate in upcoming human trials.

 “As far as neurosurgery is concerned, it’s a quantum leap,” Sagher said of the procedure. “Almost all cures for cancer are related to the body’s ability to reject the cancer cells. The problem is that the brain is an immune privileged organ, so it’s hard to trigger that immune response. This allows us to do that.

“And it uses genetic engineering, but we’re not trying to inject genes into healthy cells, we’re trying to inject genes into the tumor cells.”

Read more HERE.

Maria G. Castro, Ph.D.

R. C. Schneider Collegiate Professor of Neurosurgery
Professor, Cell and Developmental Biology
Director, NIH Cancer Biology Training Grant
Steering Committee Member, Woman of Color in the Academy Project (WOCAP)