gene replacement therapy

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gene replacement therapy (GRT) Medical treatment involving the replacement or alteration of faulty genes by means of genetic engineering. Although first used on humans in 1990, it remains a largely experimental procedure. A healthy gene is packaged into some kind of vector (usually a suitably doctored virus) so that it can be targeted at the affected cells. Initially, gene therapy was restricted to the treatment of hereditary disorders such as cystic fibrosis and sickle-cell disease. Research is being conducted into its suitability as a method for the treatment of certain cancers.