Big Excitement in Gene Therapy at ASGCT 2019

Earlier this month, Genprex’s President and Chief Operating Officer, Julien Pham attended the American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy’s 22ndAnnual Meeting in Washington, D.C., which brings together industry professionals committed to advancing knowledge, awareness and education of gene and cell therapy. This meeting serves as a catalyst to transform medicine by advancing gene and cell therapies to benefit patients and society.

Interest in the field of cell and gene therapy is expanding rapidly, and this year’s ASCGT meeting drew more than 4,500 attendees, up from last year’s 2,000 attendees. The event even had to host some of its sessions in tents set up outside of the conference hotel due to lack of room for attendees. The exciting growth at this year’s conference demonstrates the growth that cell and gene therapy industry is experiencing. This rampant industry growth seemed to be one of the key trends discussed throughout the conference, and other key takeaways from the conference focused on this progress:

  • It’s been 30 years since the first gene transfer experiment in humans. While gene therapy has come a long way in those 30 years, we still have a lot more progress to make before gene therapy becomes the first-line form of treatment for serious diseases and cancer.
  • The gene therapy market is predicted to grow exponentially. FDA’s CBER director Raj Puri reported at the conference that in 2017 there were 106 IND submissions, and in 2018 there were 206 IND submissions. In response, FDA is ramping up its staff in an effort to prepare for the number of IND submissions coming in the future.
  • The advancements being made in CAR-T, AAV, CRISPR and gene therapy are very promising. Hundreds of companies presented data from clinical trials and on drug candidates that have the potential to changes the lives of thousands.
  • Manufacturing must be able to keep up with the supply/demand for this predicted growth.

Thank you ASCGT for another incredible conference – it was a huge success. Genprex looks forward to next year’s conference and the new advancements being made in gene therapy.