Gene therapy for erectile dysfunction

Gene therapy for erectile dysfunction

BERLIN, GERMANY ( - Arnold Melman, MD, Professor and Chair, Albert Einstein College of Medicine presented "Gene Therapy" for erectile dysfunction. In this fascinating discussion, Dr. Melman explained the rationale for this approach.

He discussed the fact that K+ channels are ubiquitous and important in the contraction and vasodilatation that is so essential in erectile function. He pointed out the gene therapy for the penis did not require that all cells be treated - unlike therapy for cancer where all cells require treatment to eradicate the cancer. Using retrovirus with nuclear integration is thought to be safe in cell lines that are not replicating as opposed to those that are normally replicating (hematopoetic cell lines). Preliminary studies of eleven patients have been carried out establishing efficacy, safety and a dose response without adverse sequela after 2 years.

This is an exciting and potentially meaningful avenue of research that is being pursued by private industry.

Presented by Arnold Melman, MD, at the Annual Meeting of the American Urological Association - New York Section - September 6 - 13, 2008 - Berlin, Germany

Reported by Contributing Editor Harris M. Nagler, MD

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