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B.C. man believed to be first Canadian to get intravenous gene therapy

B.C. man believed to be first Canadian to get intravenous gene therapy
Health
In this May 2016 file photo provided by Kite Pharma, cell therapy specialists at the company s manufacturing facility in El Segundo, Calif., prepare blood cells from a patient to be engineered in the lab to fight cancer. (Kite Pharma via AP, File)

Published Thursday, March 14, 2019 2:27PM EDT

CALGARY -- A British Columbia man says he can eat his favourite foods and travel abroad without worry thanks to a clinical trial in which he was injected to treat a rare genetic disorder.

Josh McQuillan was 12 when he was diagnosed with urea cycle disorder, a dangerous condition that causes ammonia to build up in the body.

The 30-year-old has received experimental gene replacement therapy in the intensive care unit at Calgary s Foothills Medical Centre.

The therapy involves using modified viruses to add new genes to a patient s cells through an intravenous injection.

McQuillan is believed to be the first Canadian to get gene replacement this way, and only three other people in the world have undergone similar treatment.
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