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India has the research, technology and cost advantage to lead in gene therapy
Jun 04, 2011

A three day International Cell and Gene Therapy conference took place from 16th-18th November in Mumbai. Around 40 foreign speakers, scientists working on gene therapy at leading universities of the world, shared their experiences and achievements in the field with Indian scientists at the conference. Work in gene therapy encompasses stem cell research, delivery of new genes in to the body so the system can make corrections or creation of new organs and the like. Gene therapy will change the way dreaded ailments like cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular complications, etc. are cured. Many Indian scientists working with leading universities participated in the conference. "India has established its credentials in chemistry research, biotech is progressing well and I feel India will become a hub for gene therapy as well," opined Dr Farzin Farzaneh, President, International Society of Cell and Gene Therapy (ISCGT), at the inauguration of the conference.

Speaking about the objective of the conference, Farzaneh said, "Through this conference, we aim to foster collaboration between scientists and clinicians and provide a platform for research collaboration with industry and knowledge sharing. The conference is a platform for promoting latest developments and research in the areas of cell and gene therapy." Speaking about the advancements in gene therapy, Sanjeev Saxena, Chairman and CEO, Actis Biologics, a company engaged in gene therapy research said, "Nanotechnology or gene therapy may today sound sci-fi like the thought of prevention or treatment of smallpox or polio would have, to people in the last century. But science has progressed and we will see all the current research in gene therapy becoming a reality soon and India will be hopefully in the lead." UK based ISCGT were the organisers of the conference. ISCGT's principal goal is to foster camaraderie and collaboration between scientists and clinicians around the globe, in their quest for cell and gene therapy.

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