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A new form of "molecular scissors" is being developed in the laboratory of David Snyder, MD, associate director of Hematology/Bone Marrow Transplantation (BMT). These DNA enzymes, or DNAzymes, are designed to make autologous BMT more effective in treating leukemia. During an autologous BMT, stem cells are removed from a patientís blood, purged of cancerous cells, and then returned to the patient. Unfortunately, some cancerous cells may survive this process, leading to relapse. DNAzymes sever the genetic materials necessary for these cancer cells to grow. In laboratory studies, DNAzymes have been shown to eliminate as many as 90 percent or more of cancerous cells, while normal cells are virtually unaffected.

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Darrin Joy
Press Release
Suzanne Arriaga