News of the WeekClinical Research

FDA Halts All Gene Therapy Trials at Penn

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Science  28 Jan 2000:
Vol. 287, Issue 5453, pp. 565-567
DOI: 10.1126/science.287.5453.565b

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The death of a volunteer in a gene therapy experiment at the University of Pennsylvania in September triggered a flood of publicity; now, the consequences have landed on researchers and other patients at Penn. On 19 January, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) stopped all seven clinical trials run by Penn's Institute for Human Gene Therapy--perhaps the most respected and best funded center of its kind--after finding "serious deficiencies" in the way the institute monitors its trials. The FDA had already halted the trial in which 18-year-old Jesse Gelsinger died.