Some Consequences Of The Committees Findings

Although in its infancy, applications for gene therapy research using somatic cell gene therapy are presented for approval before the Gene Therapy Advisory Committee which was set up following the Committee's Report.14 In its initial year, 1993/4, a total of ten research protocols were approved, in 1994/5 an additional three, and in 1995/6 an additional five. Cystic fibrosis is the most investigated single gene disorder. Genetic testing kits for cystic fibrosis are now available by mail-order placing further pressure on researchers and individuals.15 Detection alone of a single gene disorder can provide information for prospective parents but adds little to existing reproductive choices (Lippman, 1991, p.20).16 The increase in trials in somatic cell gene therapy must always be considered in the light of the existing moratorium on germ-line gene therapy.

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