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Bluebird Bio said Wednesday that it was “very unlikely” that its experimental gene therapy for sickle cell disease was the cause of a treated patient’s cancer diagnosis. The company said it will now seek permission from regulators to resume suspended clinical trials.

The findings from Bluebird’s investigation into its Lentiglobin gene therapy pushed its stock higher by 11%, and may also relieve broader safety concerns that have weighed on other developers of gene therapies.


The biotech’s Lentiglobin gene therapy program for sickle cell disease has been frozen since the middle of February following a report that a patient had been diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.

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