New York Mesothelioma Lawyer from Belluck & Fox, LLP, Hails Milestone in Gene Therapy Treatment
New York, NY, August 09, 2012 — A regulatory green light for a gene therapy drug in Europe opens exciting new possibilities for the treatment of mesothelioma, New York lawyer Joseph W. Belluck said today.
The European Medicines Agency has recommended approval of the drug Glybera for treating a rare blood disorder, the New York Times recently reported. If the recommendation is adopted as expected by the EMA’s governing commission, it would mark the first time a gene therapy treatment has been authorized in the Western world.
“This is a major step forward in tapping the enormous potential of gene therapy,” said Belluck, a founding partner at Belluck & Fox, LLP, a New York personal injury firm dedicated to helping mesothelioma victims obtain compensation from manufacturers and employers responsible for their disease.
Glybera was developed by a Dutch company to combat lipoprotein lipase deficiency, the Times reported. People who have it do not produce an enzyme essential in breaking down fat particles in the bloodstream, resulting in inflammation of the pancreas and other problems.
Glybera delivers viable copies of the missing gene so that patients can begin creating the fat-attacking enzyme on their own.
“The disease is different but the idea is the same,” said Belluck, whose firm is an active supporter of mesothelioma research. “The promise of gene therapy is that it supplies the body with the genes it needs. Our hope is that the approval of Glybera will pave the way for treatments for other diseases such as mesothelioma.”
Mesothelioma is a cancer of the lining of the chest and abdomen caused by exposure to asbestos, a naturally occurring heat- and fire-resistant fibrous mineral. Asbestos has been used in a variety of equipment, industrial machinery and consumer products.
The Forever Fix, a book on the history and future of gene therapy by New York-based geneticist and author Ricki Lewis, highlights a clinical study at Wake Forest University that is looking into how genetics might factor into a person’s risk of mesothelioma.
Lewis discusses how gene therapy could help tackle this disease in an exclusive interview on MesotheliomaHelp.net, a website of Belluck & Fox.
Additionally, important gene therapy research and clinical trials on mesothelioma are currently taking place at the University of Pennsylvania, according to Belluck.
One reason gene therapy might be particularly helpful for mesothelioma is that victims often do not display symptoms until long after they are exposed to asbestos in an industrial or manufacturing work setting, said Belluck, whose representation in personal injury and wrongful death cases have earned him a spot in “Best Lawyers in America.”
“Belluck & Fox will continue to be in the forefront of advocating for those who suffer from mesothelioma and supporting cutting-edge research into promising treatments such as gene therapy,” Belluck said.
The firm’s New York City office is located at 546 Fifth Ave, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10036 (local phone (212) 681-1575). For more information, contact the firm at (877) 637-6843 or through the online contact form.