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Recently, €2.5 million was granted through the Eurostars joint programme to an upcoming project titled E! 7900 HD-GENE THERAPY consisting of uniQure (The Netherlands), University Medical Center Gottingen (Germany), Lausanne University Hospital (Switzerland) and Maria Curie-Skodowska University (Poland). The project is exploring ways in which to develop gene therapy, the expertise of uniQure, for the treatment of Huntington’s disease.The disease is a degenerative brain disorder affecting an individual’s ability to perform simple tasks such as walking and talking while also hindering their ability to think and reason in addition to other cognitive functions.
Currently there is no treatment or cure for Huntington’s making those afflicted by it, entirely dependent in its late stages. The project results would bring hope to many and resolve concerns of those whose parents may have carried the disease as there is a 50% chance for the gene to be inherited. According to the World Health Organization, 5 to 7 of 100,000 people are affected in Western Countries. Clinical trials are expected within two years after completion of the project. The EUREKA Network and the Eurostars program are watching this project closely as it promises to be a monumental success story for people across the world. You can find more information here.