People could avoid chronic kidney disease within a decade after Bristol University scientists found a new genetic treatment to cure a rare disorder in mice.
The scientists are hopeful that their new technique – which involves replacing faulty genes with functional ones – could be used to treat a rare genetic disease known as Nephrotic Syndrome within three-to-four years in humans.
And they believe it could be rapidly expanded to treat those causes of chronic kidney diseases that involve genetic defects.
“This technique has massive potential. It will be transformational in many types of kidney disease that currently have no treatment and inevitably lead to kidney failure and the need for dialysis,” said Professor Moin Saleem, of the University of Bristol.
The technique involves injecting the healthy genes into the body, where they are carried to the correct kidney cells through a harmless virus so they can correct the problems caused by the faulty gene.
The news comes as Malawi has only four dialysis machines catering for Central and Northern regions at Kamuzu Central Hospital’s Renal Unit in Lilongwe, with some machines not working effectively, and allegations of sabotage at Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) amidst reports that dialysis clinic operator Fresenius Medical Care
Is bidding for that contract.
Fresenius Medical Care is embroiled in allegations that the company paid bribes to in several countries to win or retain business including Malawi’s Ministry of Health that it should be given a contract for services to supply dialysis services to Kamuzu Central Hospital.
KCH Renal Unit is serviced by Nipro Japan through their agent Worldwide Pharmaceutical (WWP). They have a total of 17 machines, but it is reported that some machines do not function.
Meanwhile, presidential adviser on non-governmental organisations Martha Kwataine said government is working to address the challenges faced by kidney patients at the KCH Renal Unit.
Chronic kidney disease is a very common long-term complication of diabetes. An estimated 40 per cent of people with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes will develop it during their lifetime.
At the moment there’s no cure, but medicine can help control many of the problems that cause the condition and the complications that can happen as a result of it.
Fresenius Medical Care has reportedly embarked on a smear campaign against Nipro Japan in bid to snatch away the contract from KCH.
However, Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) recently request to the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to investigate Fresenius for gratification of officials in Malawi to win contracts.
It is alleged that Fresenius has doled out bribes to officials in the Ministry of Health to get the dialysis deal extension despite even complaints of bad service they offered.
In Morocco, for instance, the department said the company paid bribes through a “sham” commission to a Moroccan state official in order to win contracts to develop dialysis centers at state-owned military hospitals.
The scheme worked by having the commission pay 10 percent of the value of the contract to the official, and the payment would be disguised as a bonus payment to a Fresenius company employee.
In addition to Morocco, Angola and Saudi Arabia, the company also paid bribes in Spain, the US Justice Department said.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :