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Cystic fibrosis (CF) is characterised by respiratory and pancreatic deficiencies that stem from the loss of fully functional CFTR (CF transmembrane conductance regulator) at the membrane of epithelial cells. Current treatment modalities aim to delay the deterioration in lung function, which is mostly responsible for the relatively short life expectancy of CF sufferers; however none have so far successfully dealt with the underlying molecular defect. Novel pharmacological approaches to ameliorate the lack of active CFTR in respiratory epithelial cells are beginning to address more of the pathophysiological defects caused by CFTR mutations. However, CFTR gene replacement by gene therapy remains the most likely option for addressing the basic defects, including ion transport and inflammatory functions of CFTR. In this chapter, we will review the latest preclinical and clinical advances in pharmacotherapy and gene therapy for CF lung disease. © 2010 Springer Basel.

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