Gene editing

Gene therapies expected to come with big price tags

-cell therapy has been hailed as a major advance in clinical cancer care. CAR-T cells are genetically modified human lymphocytes and gene therapy medicinal products.
A lab technician opens a cryogenic container at the Paoli-Calmettes Institute cancer care center in Marseille, France. Photo: Gerars Julien/AFP/Getty Images

Dozens of potentially revolutionary gene therapies are in the development pipeline, but we haven't yet figured out how to pay for them, Bloomberg reports.

Details: These drugs are expected to launch with extremely high prices, which are partially justified by the fact that they're designed as cures for diseases that are currently treated long-term. But that doesn't mean we know how to pay these huge sums in one sitting.

World Health Organization calls for strong gene editing framework

Photo of the World Health Organization emblem
WHO headquarters in Geneva. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images

Top global scientists declined to declare the moratorium on gene editing heritable genes in humans called for by some experts, but warned it would be "irresponsible" to allow this in clinical practice and recommended initial steps for a global regulatory framework under the World Health Organization.

Why it matters: The global scientific and ethical community continues to be divided on whether there should be a complete moratorium on editing germline, or heritable, cells for now. However there's a growing consensus that some global regulatory framework is needed to prevent a repeat of the ethically and medically questionable way a Chinese scientist edited and implanted embryos.