Will I Have to Mortgage My House? Reflections on Gene Therapy, Innovation, and Inequality

Friends Lunch with a Member - Eben Kirksey

Eben Kirksey
Friends of the Institute Member, School of Social Science
May 15, 2020
The first FDA-approved gene therapy, Kymriah, was released to the public in August 2017 with a $475,000 price tag. With the emergence of personalized genetic medicine, we are entering a new era of profound inequality. This talk explores the stories of children and parents who signed up for the Kymriah clinical trial before it was approved--risking their lives and household finances in pursuit of a cancer cure. Issues of race and class played out at Penn Medicine, as researchers explored new horizons of hope with living cellular therapies.