Happy Story: Scientists Have Found a New Cure for the Bubble Boy Disease

April 22, 2019

Researchers at St. Jude Children's Hospital in Memphis just announced a new treatment that could totally CURE his character.

The disease he had in the movie is called severe combined immunodeficiency, or SCID for short.  And it's when you're born without an immune system.  Without treatment, the survival rate is only about a year or two.

The new treatment involves harvesting stem cells from the patient's bone marrow, then modifying their genes.  And researchers use a deactivated version of HIV to do it.

A similar treatment made headlines five years ago.  But apparently this one's even better, because it fixes all three types of cells needed for a healthy immune system.

The president of St. Jude's says it works so well, they're comfortable using the word "cure."  The only question is whether more treatments will be necessary later on.

So far, once is enough.  And kids who get the treatment end up with full immune systems, just like the rest of us have.  Now they just want to see if the kids still have all that immunity 10 and 20 years down the line.

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