“Advanced therapy” refers to a segment of medical products and treatments that use gene therapy, cell therapy & tissue engineering. Advanced therapy directly targets diseased cells instead of addressing symptoms.

Advanced therapies are classified into three key types:

  • Gene therapy is a widely used term to refer to the manipulation of genes to affect change on a cellular level – this change seeks to have a direct result on the behavior of cells in the body. The current research in gene therapy has focused on replacing mutated genes, inactivating/silencing mutated genes, or inserting new healthy genes to help fight disease. 

  • Tissue engineering refers to the use of tissues or cells to restore human tissue. Examples include the restoration of a person’s eyesight
  • Regenerative medicine refers to the replacement of damaged tissues and organs.

These advanced therapies come with their own side effects but, for some patients, they have been shown to cure their disease by reprogramming their immune systems. Medicine authorities are expecting more advanced therapies to be made available in the coming years and our community will need to adapt in how we both deliver them and support patients who receive them.

While the NHS, the life sciences sector, and others prepare for more advanced therapies, to make sure every eligible patient has access to lifesaving treatments.