A teenage girl’s incurable cancer has been cleared from her body in the first use of a revolutionary new type of medicine.
Every other treatment for Alyssa’s leukaemia had failed.
Doctors from Great Ormond Street Hospital decided to try Base Editing to perform a feat of biological engineering to build her a new living drug.
Now six months on the cancer is completely undetectable, with close monitoring incase it comes back.
Alyssa, who is 13 and from Leicester, was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in May last year.
T-cells are supposed to be the body’s guardians – seeking out and destroying threats – but for Alyssa they had become the danger and were growing out of control.
Her cancer was aggressive. Chemotherapy, and then a bone-marrow transplant, were unable to rid it from her body.
Without the experimental medicine, the only option left would have been merely to make Alyssa as comfortable as possible.