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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Early interaction of AAV8 with the host immune system following intramuscular delivery results in weak but detectable lymphocyte and dendritic cell transduction.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 10-22-2014
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Following in vivo recombinant Adeno-Associated-Virus (rAAV)-based gene transfer, adaptive immune responses specific to the vector or the transgene product have emerged as a potential roadblock to successful clinical translation. The occurrence of such responses depends on several parameters including the route of vector administration as well as the viral serotype and the genome configuration, either self complementary (sc) or single stranded (ss). These parameters influence rAAV vector-associated immunity by modulating the crosstalk between the vector and the host immune system including vector ability to interact or even transduce lymphoid tissues in general and antigen-presenting cells (APCs) in particular. Little is known about immune cell populations that are targeted in vivo by rAAV vectors. Moreover, the transduction of dendritic cells (DC) is still controversial and not directly demonstrated. Here, we show that intramuscular administration of a sc rAAV8 vector in the mouse leads to a rapid distribution of viral genomes in the lymphoid tissues which is associated to transgene expression. Transduced cells were detected in follicular areas of the spleen and the draining lymph nodes. In addition to B and T lymphocytes, transduced professional APC were detected although at very low frequency. In addition, viral genomes and transgene transcripts were also detected in these cell populations after ss rAAV8 vector administration. Although the functional significance of those observations needs further explorations, our results highlight an early and intricate interaction between the rAAV vector upon its in vivo delivery and the host immune system.
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Manufacturing and characterization of a recombinant adeno-associated virus type 8 reference standard material.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 10-03-2014
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Abstract Gene therapy approaches using recombinant adeno-associated virus serotype 2 (rAAV2) and serotype 8 (rAAV8) have achieved significant clinical benefits. The generation of rAAV Reference Standard Materials (RSM) is key to providing points of reference for particle titer, vector genome titer, and infectious titer for gene transfer vectors. Following the example of the rAAV2RSM, here we have generated and characterized a novel RSM based on rAAV serotype 8. The rAAV8RSM was produced using transient transfection, and the purification was based on density gradient ultracentrifugation. The rAAV8RSM was distributed for characterization along with standard assay protocols to 16 laboratories worldwide. Mean titers and 95% confidence intervals were determined for capsid particles (mean, 5.50×10(11) pt/ml; CI, 4.26×10(11) to 6.75×10(11) pt/ml), vector genomes (mean, 5.75×10(11) vg/ml; CI, 3.05×10(11) to 1.09×10(12) vg/ml), and infectious units (mean, 1.26×10(9) IU/ml; CI, 6.46×10(8) to 2.51×10(9) IU/ml). Notably, there was a significant degree of variation between institutions for each assay despite the relatively tight correlation of assay results within an institution. This outcome emphasizes the need to use RSMs to calibrate the titers of rAAV vectors in preclinical and clinical studies at a time when the field is maturing rapidly. The rAAV8RSM has been deposited at the American Type Culture Collection (VR-1816) and is available to the scientific community.
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Liver-specific transcriptional modules identified by genome-wide in silico analysis enable efficient gene therapy in mice and non-human primates.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 04-04-2014
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The robustness and safety of liver-directed gene therapy can be substantially improved by enhancing expression of the therapeutic transgene in the liver. To achieve this, we developed a new approach of rational in silico vector design. This approach relies on a genome-wide bio-informatics strategy to identify cis-acting regulatory modules (CRMs) containing evolutionary conserved clusters of transcription factor binding site motifs that determine high tissue-specific gene expression. Incorporation of these CRMs into adeno-associated viral (AAV) and non-viral vectors enhanced gene expression in mice liver 10 to 100-fold, depending on the promoter used. Furthermore, these CRMs resulted in robust and sustained liver-specific expression of coagulation factor IX (FIX), validating their immediate therapeutic and translational relevance. Subsequent translational studies indicated that therapeutic FIX expression levels could be attained reaching 20-35% of normal levels after AAV-based liver-directed gene therapy in cynomolgus macaques. This study underscores the potential of rational vector design using computational approaches to improve their robustness and therefore allows for the use of lower and thus safer vector doses for gene therapy, while maximizing therapeutic efficacy.
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Forelimb Treatment in a Large Cohort of Dystrophic Dogs Supports Delivery of a Recombinant AAV for Exon Skipping in Duchenne Patients.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 02-28-2014
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Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe muscle-wasting disorder caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene, without curative treatment yet available. Our study provides, for the first time, the overall safety profile and therapeutic dose of a recombinant adeno-associated virus vector, serotype 8 (rAAV8) carrying a modified U7snRNA sequence promoting exon skipping to restore a functional in-frame dystrophin transcript, and injected by locoregional transvenous perfusion of the forelimb. Eighteen Golden Retriever Muscular Dystrophy (GRMD) dogs were exposed to increasing doses of GMP-manufactured vector. Treatment was well tolerated in all, and no acute nor delayed adverse effect, including systemic and immune toxicity was detected. There was a dose relationship for the amount of exon skipping with up to 80% of myofibers expressing dystrophin at the highest dose. Similarly, histological, nuclear magnetic resonance pathological indices and strength improvement responded in a dose-dependent manner. The systematic comparison of effects using different independent methods, allowed to define a minimum threshold of dystrophin expressing fibers (>33% for structural measures and >40% for strength) under which there was no clear-cut therapeutic effect. Altogether, these results support the concept of a phase 1/2 trial of locoregional delivery into upper limbs of nonambulatory DMD patients.
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Gene therapy prolongs survival and restores function in murine and canine models of myotubular myopathy.
Sci Transl Med
PUBLISHED: 01-24-2014
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Loss-of-function mutations in the myotubularin gene (MTM1) cause X-linked myotubular myopathy (XLMTM), a fatal, congenital pediatric disease that affects the entire skeletal musculature. Systemic administration of a single dose of a recombinant serotype 8 adeno-associated virus (AAV8) vector expressing murine myotubularin to Mtm1-deficient knockout mice at the onset or at late stages of the disease resulted in robust improvement in motor activity and contractile force, corrected muscle pathology, and prolonged survival throughout a 6-month study. Similarly, single-dose intravascular delivery of a canine AAV8-MTM1 vector in XLMTM dogs markedly improved severe muscle weakness and respiratory impairment, and prolonged life span to more than 1 year in the absence of toxicity or a humoral or cell-mediated immune response. These results demonstrate the therapeutic efficacy of AAV-mediated gene therapy for myotubular myopathy in small- and large-animal models, and provide proof of concept for future clinical trials in XLMTM patients.
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Transgene regulation using the tetracycline-inducible TetR-KRAB system after AAV-mediated gene transfer in rodents and nonhuman primates.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-01-2014
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Numerous studies have demonstrated the efficacy of the Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV)-based gene delivery platform in vivo. The control of transgene expression in many protocols is highly desirable for therapeutic applications and/or safety reasons. To date, the tetracycline and the rapamycin dependent regulatory systems have been the most widely evaluated. While the long-term regulation of the transgene has been obtained in rodent models, the translation of these studies to larger animals, especially to nonhuman primates (NHP), has often resulted in an immune response against the recombinant regulator protein involved in transgene expression regulation. These immune responses were dependent on the target tissue and vector delivery route. Here, using AAV vectors, we evaluated a doxycyclin-inducible system in rodents and macaques in which the TetR protein is fused to the human Krüppel associated box (KRAB) protein. We demonstrated long term gene regulation efficiency in rodents after subretinal and intramuscular administration of AAV5 and AAV1 vectors, respectively. However, as previously described for other chimeric transactivators, the TetR-KRAB-based system failed to achieve long term regulation in the macaque after intramuscular vector delivery because of the development of an immune response. Thus, immunity against the chimeric transactivator TetR-KRAB emerged as the primary limitation for the clinical translation of the system when targeting the skeletal muscle, as previously described for other regulatory proteins. New developments in the field of chimeric drug-sensitive transactivators with the potential to not trigger the host immune system are still needed.
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Successful Gene Therapy in the RPGRIP1-deficient Dog: a Large Model of Cone-Rod Dystrophy.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 07-05-2013
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For the development of new therapies, proof-of-concept studies in large animal models that share clinical features with their human counterparts represent a pivotal step. For inherited retinal dystrophies primarily involving photoreceptor cells, the efficacy of gene therapy has been demonstrated in canine models of stationary cone dystrophies and progressive rod-cone dystrophies but not in large models of progressive cone-rod dystrophies, another important cause of blindness. To address the last issue, we evaluated gene therapy in the retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator interacting protein 1 (RPGRIP1)-deficient dog, a model exhibiting a severe cone-rod dystrophy similar to that seen in humans. Subretinal injection of AAV5 (n = 5) or AAV8 (n = 2) encoding the canine Rpgrip1 improved photoreceptor survival in transduced areas of treated retinas. Cone function was significantly and stably rescued in all treated eyes (18-72% of those recorded in normal eyes) up to 24 months postinjection. Rod function was also preserved (22-29% of baseline function) in four of the five treated dogs up to 24 months postinjection. No detectable rod function remained in untreated contralateral eyes. More importantly, treatment preserved bright- and dim-light vision. Efficacy of gene therapy in this large animal model of cone-rod dystrophy provides great promise for human treatment.Molecular Therapy (2013); doi:10.1038/mt.2013.232.
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scAAV9 intracisternal delivery results in efficient gene transfer to the central nervous system of a feline model of motor neuron disease.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 06-27-2013
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On the basis of previous studies suggesting that vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) could protect motor neurons from degeneration, adeno-associated virus vectors (serotypes 1 and 9) encoding VEGF (AAV.vegf) were administered in a limb-expression 1 (LIX1)-deficient cat-a large animal model of lower motor neuron disease-using three different delivery routes to the central nervous system. AAV.vegf vectors were injected into the motor cortex via intracerebral administration, into the cisterna magna, or intravenously in young adult cats. Intracerebral injections resulted in detectable transgene DNA and transcripts throughout the spinal cord, confirming anterograde transport of AAV via the corticospinal pathway. However, such strategy led to low levels of VEGF expression in the spinal cord. Similar AAV doses injected intravenously resulted also in poor spinal cord transduction. In contrast, intracisternal delivery of AAV exhibited long-term transduction and high levels of VEGF expression in the entire spinal cord, yet with no detectable therapeutic clinical benefit in LIX1-deficient animals. Altogether, we demonstrate (i) that intracisternal delivery is an effective AAV delivery route resulting in high transduction of the entire spinal cord, associated with little to no off-target gene expression, and (ii) that in a LIX1-deficient cat model, however, VEGF expressed at high levels in the spinal cord has no beneficial impact on the disease course.
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PCR-based detection of gene transfer vectors: application to gene doping surveillance.
Anal Bioanal Chem
PUBLISHED: 05-20-2013
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Athletes who illicitly use drugs to enhance their athletic performance are at risk of being banned from sports competitions. Consequently, some athletes may seek new doping methods that they expect to be capable of circumventing detection. With advances in gene transfer vector design and therapeutic gene transfer, and demonstrations of safety and therapeutic benefit in humans, there is an increased probability of the pursuit of gene doping by athletes. In anticipation of the potential for gene doping, assays have been established to directly detect complementary DNA of genes that are top candidates for use in doping, as well as vector control elements. The development of molecular assays that are capable of exposing gene doping in sports can serve as a deterrent and may also identify athletes who have illicitly used gene transfer for performance enhancement. PCR-based methods to detect foreign DNA with high reliability, sensitivity, and specificity include TaqMan real-time PCR, nested PCR, and internal threshold control PCR.
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A 10 patient case report on the impact of plasmapheresis upon neutralizing factors against adeno-associated virus (AAV) types 1, 2, 6, and 8.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 05-31-2011
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Adeno-associated viruses (AAV) are small, nonenveloped single-stranded DNA viruses which require helper viruses to facilitate efficient replication. These recombinant viruses are some of the most promising candidates for therapeutic gene transfer to treat many genetic and acquired diseases. Nevertheless, the presence of humoral responses to the wild-type AAV common among humans is one of the limitations of in vivo transduction efficacy in humans using cognate recombinant vector. In this study, based on the serum samples that we were able to collect from various clinical situations, we studied the impact of one to five plasmapheresis (PP), at 1-5 day intervals on neutralizing factor (NAF) titers specific for AAV types 1, 2, 6, and 8 in seropositive patients with diverse pathologies and immunosuppressor treatments. We show that frequent sessions of PP result in drastic reduction of NAF specific for AAV1, 2, 6, and 8 to undetectable levels or titers <1:5, mainly when initial titers, i.e., before the first PP were ?1:20. Altogether, these results show that the use of PP and its possible association with pharmacological immunosuppressive treatments may help to design optimal management of seropositive patients for AAV gene therapy treatments.
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Adeno-associated viral vector-mediated transgene expression is independent of DNA methylation in primate liver and skeletal muscle.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 04-21-2011
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Recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors can support long-term transgene expression in quiescent tissues. Intramuscular (i.m.) administration of a single-stranded AAV vector (ssAAV) in the nonhuman primate (NHP) results in a peak protein level at 2-3 months, followed by a decrease over several months before reaching a steady-state. To investigate transgene expression and vector genome persistence, we previously demonstrated that rAAV vector genomes associate with histones and form a chromatin structure in NHP skeletal muscle more than one year after injection. In the mammalian nucleus, chromatin remodeling via epigenetic modifications plays key role in transcriptional regulation. Among those, CpG hyper-methylation of promoters is a known hallmark of gene silencing. To assess the involvement of DNA methylation on the transgene expression, we injected NHP via the i.m. or the intravenous (i.v.) route with a recombinant ssAAV2/1 vector. The expression cassette contains the transgene under the transcriptional control of the constitutive Rous Sarcoma Virus promoter (RSVp). Total DNA isolated from NHP muscle and liver biopsies from 1 to 37 months post-injection was treated with sodium bisulfite and subsequently analyzed by pyrosequencing. No significant CpG methylation of the RSVp was found in rAAV virions or in vector DNA isolated from NHP transduced tissues. Direct de novo DNA methylation appears not to be involved in repressing transgene expression in NHP after gene transfer mediated by ssAAV vectors. The study presented here examines host/vector interactions and the impact on transgene expression in a clinically relevant model.
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Neonatal systemic delivery of scAAV9 in rodents and large animals results in gene transfer to RPE cells in the retina.
Exp. Eye Res.
PUBLISHED: 03-17-2011
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Systemic delivery of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors has recently been shown to cross the blood brain barrier in rodents and large animals and to efficiently target cells of the central nervous system. Such approach could be particularly interesting to treat lysosomal storage diseases or neurodegenerative disorders characterized by multiple organs injuries especially neuronal and retinal dysfunctions. However, the ability of rAAV vector to cross the blood retina barrier and to transduce retinal cells after systemic injection has not been precisely determined. In this study, gene transfer was investigated in the retina of neonatal and adult rats after intravenous injection of self-complementary (sc) rAAV serotype 1, 5, 6, 8, and 9 carrying a CMV-driven green fluorescent protein (GFP), by fluorescence fundus photography and histological examination. Neonatal rats injected with scAAV2/9 vector displayed the strongest GFP expression in the retina, within the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells. Retinal tropism of scAAV2/9 vector was further assessed after systemic delivery in large animal models, i.e., dogs and cats. Interestingly, efficient gene transfer was observed in the RPE cells of these two large animal models following neonatal intravenous injection of the vector. The ability of scAAV2/9 to transduce simultaneously neurons in the central nervous system, and RPE cells in the retina, after neonatal systemic delivery, makes this approach potentially interesting for the treatment of infantile neurodegenerative diseases characterized by both neuronal and retinal damages.
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Safe, efficient, and reproducible gene therapy of the brain in the dog models of Sanfilippo and Hurler syndromes.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 12-07-2010
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Recent trials in patients with neurodegenerative diseases documented the safety of gene therapy based on adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors deposited into the brain. Inborn errors of the metabolism are the most frequent causes of neurodegeneration in pre-adulthood. In Sanfilippo syndrome, a lysosomal storage disease in which heparan sulfate oligosaccharides accumulate, the onset of clinical manifestation is before 5 years. Studies in the mouse model showed that gene therapy providing the missing enzyme ?-N-acetyl-glucosaminidase to brain cells prevents neurodegeneration and improves behavior. We now document safety and efficacy in affected dogs. Animals received eight deposits of a serotype 5 AAV vector, including vector prepared in insect Sf9 cells. As shown previously in dogs with the closely related Hurler syndrome, immunosuppression was necessary to prevent neuroinflammation and elimination of transduced cells. In immunosuppressed dogs, vector was efficiently delivered throughout the brain, induced ?-N-acetyl-glucosaminidase production, cleared stored compounds and storage lesions. The suitability of the procedure for clinical application was further assessed in Hurler dogs, providing information on reproducibility, tolerance, appropriate vector type and dosage, and optimal age for treatment in a total number of 25 treated dogs. Results strongly support projects of human trials aimed at assessing this treatment in Sanfilippo syndrome.
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Characterization of a recombinant adeno-associated virus type 2 Reference Standard Material.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 09-16-2010
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A recombinant adeno-associated virus serotype 2 Reference Standard Material (rAAV2 RSM) has been produced and characterized with the purpose of providing a reference standard for particle titer, vector genome titer, and infectious titer for AAV2 gene transfer vectors. Production and purification of the reference material were carried out by helper virus-free transient transfection and chromatographic purification. The purified bulk material was vialed, confirmed negative for microbial contamination, and then distributed for characterization along with standard assay protocols and assay reagents to 16 laboratories worldwide. Using statistical transformation and modeling of the raw data, mean titers and confidence intervals were determined for capsid particles ({X}, 9.18?x?10¹¹ particles/ml; 95% confidence interval [CI], 7.89?x?10¹¹ to 1.05?x?10¹² particles/ml), vector genomes ({X}, 3.28?x?10¹? vector genomes/ml; 95% CI, 2.70?x?10¹? to 4.75?x?10¹? vector genomes/ml), transducing units ({X}, 5.09?x?10? transducing units/ml; 95% CI, 2.00?x?10? to 9.60?x?10? transducing units/ml), and infectious units ({X}, 4.37?x?10? TCID?? IU/ml; 95% CI, 2.06?x?10? to 9.26?x?10? TCID?? IU/ml). Further analysis confirmed the identity of the reference material as AAV2 and the purity relative to nonvector proteins as greater than 94%. One obvious trend in the quantitative data was the degree of variation between institutions for each assay despite the relatively tight correlation of assay results within an institution. This relatively poor degree of interlaboratory precision and accuracy was apparent even though attempts were made to standardize the assays by providing detailed protocols and common reagents. This is the first time that such variation between laboratories has been thoroughly documented and the findings emphasize the need in the field for universal reference standards. The rAAV2 RSM has been deposited with the American Type Culture Collection and is available to the scientific community to calibrate laboratory-specific internal titer standards. Anticipated uses of the rAAV2 RSM are discussed.
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Regulation of retinal function but nonrescue of vision in RPE65-deficient dogs treated with doxycycline-regulatable AAV vectors.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 03-30-2010
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In previous studies, we demonstrated that recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV)-mediated gene transfer of the doxycycline (Dox)-regulatable system allows for the regulation of erythropoietin (EPO) expression in the retina of nonhuman primates after intravenous or oral administration of Dox. In addition, it was shown that administrating different amounts of Dox resulted in a dose-response dynamic of transgene expression. Adeno-associated viral gene therapy has raised hope for the treatment of patients with Leber congenital amaurosis, caused by mutations in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE)-specific gene RPE65. The preliminary results of three clinical trials suggest some improvement in visual function. However, further improvements might be necessary to optimize vision recovery and this means developing vectors able to generate transgene expression at physiological levels. The purpose of this study was to investigate the ability of the Dox-regulatable system to regulate retinal function in RPE65(-/-) Briard dogs. rAAV vectors expressing RPE65 under the control of either the TetOff and TetOn Dox-regulated promoters or the cytomegalovirus (CMV) constitutive promoter were generated and administered subretinally to seven RPE65-deficient dogs. We demonstrate that the induction and deinduction of retinal function, as assessed by electroretinography (ERG), can be achieved using a Dox-regulatable system, but do not lead to any recovery of vision.
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Lack of immunotoxicity after regional intravenous (RI) delivery of rAAV to nonhuman primate skeletal muscle.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 11-03-2009
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In the absence of an immune response from the host, intramuscular (IM) injection of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) results in the permanent expression of the transgene from mouse to primate models. However, recent gene transfer studies into animal models and humans indicate that the risk of transgene and/or capsid-specific immune responses occurs and depends on multiple factors. Among these factors, the route of delivery is important, although poorly addressed in large animal models. Here, we compare the IM and the drug-free regional intravenous (RI) deliveries of rAAV in nonhuman primate (NHP) skeletal muscle monitoring the host immune response toward the transgene. We show that IM is consistently associated with immunotoxicity and the destruction of the genetically modified myofibers, whereas RI allows the stable expression of the transgene. This has important implications for the design of clinical trials for gene transfer in skeletal muscle.
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Detection of intact rAAV particles up to 6 years after successful gene transfer in the retina of dogs and primates.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 05-02-2009
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Gene transfer to the retina using recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) vectors has proven to be an effective option for the treatment of retinal degenerative diseases in several animal models and has recently advanced into clinical trials in humans. To date, intracellular trafficking of AAV vectors and subsequent capsid degradation has been studied only in vitro, but the fate of AAV particles in transduced cells following subretinal injection has yet to be elucidated. Using electron microscopy and western blot, we analyzed retinas of one primate and four dogs that had been subretinally injected with AAV2/4, -2/5, or -2/2 serotypes and that displayed efficient gene transfer over several years. We show that intact AAV particles are still present in retinal cells, for up to 6 years after successful gene transfer in these large animals. The persistence of intact vector particles in the target organ, several years postadministration, is totally unexpected and, therefore, represents a new and unanticipated safety issue to consider at a time when gene therapy clinical trials raise new immunological concerns.
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Efficient intrathymic gene transfer following in situ administration of a rAAV serotype 8 vector in mice and nonhuman primates.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 05-02-2009
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The thymus is the primary site of T-cell development and plays a key role in the induction of self-tolerance. We previously showed that the intrathymic (i.t.) injection of a transgene-expressing lentiviral vector (LV) in mice can result in the correction of a T cell-specific genetic defect. Nevertheless, the efficiency of thymocyte transduction did not exceed 0.1-0.3% and we were unable to detect any thymus transduction in macaques. As such, we initiated studies to assess the capacity of recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors to transduce murine and primate thymic cells. In vivo administration of AAV serotype 2-derived single-stranded AAV (ssAAV) and self-complementary AAV (scAAV) vectors pseudotyped with capsid proteins of serotypes 1, 2, 4, 5, and 8 demonstrated that murine thymus transduction was significantly enhanced by scAAV2/8. Transgene expression was detected in 5% of thymocytes and, notably, transduced cells represented 1% of peripheral T lymphocytes. Moreover, i.t. administration of scAAV2/8 particles in macaques, by endoscopic-mediated guidance, resulted in significant gene transfer. Thus, in healthy animals, where thymic gene transfer does not provide a selective advantage, scAAV2/8 is a unique tool promoting the in situ transduction of thymocytes with the subsequent export of gene-modified lymphocytes to the periphery.
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In vivo gene regulation using tetracycline-regulatable systems.
Adv. Drug Deliv. Rev.
PUBLISHED: 04-23-2009
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Numerous preclinical studies have demonstrated the efficacy of viral gene delivery vectors, and recent clinical trials have shown promising results. However, the tight control of transgene expression is likely to be required for therapeutic applications and in some instances, for safety reasons. For this purpose, several ligand-dependent transcription regulatory systems have been developed. Among these, the tetracycline-regulatable system is by far the most frequently used and the most advanced towards gene therapy trials. This review will focus on this system and will describe the most recent progress in the regulation of transgene expression in various organs, including the muscle, the retina and the brain. Since the development of an immune response to the transactivator was observed following gene transfer in the muscle of nonhuman primate, focus will be therefore, given on the immune response to transgene products of the tetracycline inducible promoter.
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Intravenous administration of self-complementary AAV9 enables transgene delivery to adult motor neurons.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 04-14-2009
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Therapeutic gene delivery to the whole spinal cord is a major challenge for the treatment of motor neuron (MN) diseases. Systemic administration of viral gene vectors would provide an optimal means for the long-term delivery of therapeutic molecules from blood to the spinal cord but this approach is hindered by the presence of the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Here, we describe the first successful study of MN transduction in adult animals following intravenous (i.v.) delivery of self-complementary (sc) AAV9 vectors (up to 28% in mice). Intravenous MN transduction was achieved in adults without pharmacological disruption of the BBB and transgene expression lasted at least 5 months. Importantly, this finding was successfully translated to large animals, with the demonstration of an efficient systemic scAAV9 gene delivery to the neonate and adult cat spinal cord. This new and noninvasive procedure raises the hope of whole spinal cord correction of MN diseases and may lead to the development of new gene therapy protocols in patients.
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Adeno-associated virus capsid serotype identification: Analytical methods development and application.
J. Virol. Methods
PUBLISHED: 03-11-2009
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Mass spectrometry (MS) has been utilized to address the need for a rapid and reliable assay to confirm the capsid serotype identity of recombinant AAV gene transfer vectors. The differences in the primary amino acid sequence of AAV serotypes generate a unique set of fragments with different masses upon proteolytic digestion, and by comparing the fragment masses against common and custom databases, reliable capsid serotype identification is achieved. Highly homologous serotypes, such as AAV1, AAV2, and AAV8, can be distinguished from each other, as well as from less homologous serotypes such as AAV4, and AAV5. Furthermore, analysis of the MS data for wild-type AAV4 compared to an AAV4 capsid with a single amino acid mutation demonstrates the sensitivity of the method and validates the relevance of the method in the context of retinal gene transfer. With an expanding repertoire of AAV serotypes, physicochemical methods for capsid analysis, such as MS, are highly desirable and do not require product-specific analytical reagents such as monoclonal antibodies. A MS-based capsid identity test is suitable for cGMP lot release testing of rAAV gene transfer products and will help ensure patient protection.
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Human alpha-iduronidase gene transfer mediated by adeno-associated virus types 1, 2, and 5 in the brain of nonhuman primates: vector diffusion and biodistribution.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 03-11-2009
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We have previously demonstrated that delivery of a recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) encoding human alpha-iduronidase (hIDUA) in the putamen and centrum semiovale was feasible and beneficial in a dog model of Hurlers syndrome. In the present study, we investigated the safety and vector diffusion profile of three rAAV serotypes (rAAV2/1, rAAV2/2, and rAAV2/5), encoding hIDUA in the central and peripheral nervous systems of nonhuman primates. Six macaques received the same vector dose injected into the right putamen and the homolateral internal capsule. Neurological examinations were done regularly and showed no detectable clinical consequence of the intracerebral injections. Because transgene IDUA was indistinguishable from endogenous enzymatic activity, we looked for vector diffusion by performing quantitative polymerase chain reaction on serial sections from the brain and spinal cord. We found that global diffusion throughout the brain was not significantly different between the three serotypes. However, rAAV2/1 and rAAV2/5 resulted in higher vector copy numbers per cell than did rAAV2/2, respectively, in the brain and the distal neuronal structures (spinal cord and peripheral nerves).
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The RPGRIP1-deficient dog, a promising canine model for gene therapy.
Mol. Vis.
PUBLISHED: 02-10-2009
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To evaluate the RPGRIP1-deficient miniature longhaired dachshund (MLHD) dog as a potential candidate for gene therapy.
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Restoration of vision in the pde6?-deficient dog, a large animal model of rod-cone dystrophy.
Mol. Ther.
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Defects in the ? subunit of rod cGMP phosphodiesterase 6 (PDE6?) are associated with autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (RP), a childhood blinding disease with early retinal degeneration and vision loss. To date, there is no treatment for this pathology. The aim of this preclinical study was to test recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene addition therapy in the rod-cone dysplasia type 1 (rcd1) dog, a large animal model of naturally occurring PDE6? deficiency that strongly resembles the human pathology. A total of eight rcd1 dogs were injected subretinally with AAV2/5RK.cpde6? (n = 4) or AAV2/8RK.cpde6? (n = 4). In vivo and post-mortem morphological analysis showed a significant preservation of the retinal structure in transduced areas of both AAV2/5RK.cpde6?- and AAV2/8RK.cpde6?-treated retinas. Moreover, substantial rod-derived electroretinography (ERG) signals were recorded as soon as 1 month postinjection (35% of normal eyes) and remained stable for at least 18 months (the duration of the study) in treated eyes. Rod-responses were undetectable in untreated contralateral eyes. Most importantly, dim-light vision was restored in all treated rcd1 dogs. These results demonstrate for the first time that gene therapy effectively restores long-term retinal function and vision in a large animal model of autosomal recessive rod-cone dystrophy, and provide great promise for human treatment.
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Humoral and cellular capsid-specific immune responses to adeno-associated virus type 1 in randomized healthy donors.
J. Immunol.
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A major impediment to the use of adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated gene delivery to muscle in clinical applications is the pre-existing immune responses against the vector. Pre-existing humoral response to different AAV serotypes is now well documented. In contrast, cellular responses to AAV capsid have not been analyzed in a systematic manner, despite the risk of T cell reactivation upon gene transfer. AAV1 has been widely used in humans to target muscle. In this study, we analyzed PBMCs and sera of healthy donors for the presence of AAV1 capsid-specific T cell responses and AAV1 neutralizing factors. Approximately 30% of donors presented AAV1 capsid-specific T cells, mainly effector memory CD8(+) cells. IFN-?-producing cells were also observed among effector memory CD4(+) cells for two of these donors. Moreover, to our knowledge, this study shows for the first time on a large cohort that there was no correlation between AAV1-specific T cell and humoral responses. Indeed, most donors presenting specific Ig and neutralizing factors were negative for cellular response (and vice versa). These new data raise the question of prescreening patients not only for the humoral response, but also for the cellular response. Clearly, a better understanding of the natural immunology of AAV serotypes will allow us to improve AAV gene therapy and make it an efficient treatment for genetic disease.
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Development and utility of an internal threshold control (ITC) real-time PCR assay for exogenous DNA detection.
PLoS ONE
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Sensitive and specific tests for detecting exogenous DNA molecules are useful for infectious disease diagnosis, gene therapy clinical trial safety, and gene doping surveillance. Taqman real-time PCR using specific sequence probes provides an effective approach to accurately and quantitatively detect exogenous DNA. However, one of the major challenges in these analyses is to eliminate false positive signals caused by either non-targeted exogenous or endogenous DNA sequences, or false negative signals caused by impurities that inhibit PCR. Although multiplex Taqman PCR assays have been applied to address these problems by adding extra primer-probe sets targeted to endogenous DNA sequences, the differences between targets can lead to different detection efficiencies. To avoid these complications, a Taqman PCR-based approach that incorporates an internal threshold control (ITC) has been developed. In this single reaction format, the target sequence and ITC template are co-amplified by the same primers, but are detected by different probes each with a unique fluorescent dye. Sample DNA, a prescribed number of ITC template molecules set near the limit of sensitivity, a single pair of primers, target probe and ITC probe are added to one reaction. Fluorescence emission signals are obtained simultaneously to determine the cycle thresholds (Ct) for amplification of the target and ITC sequences. The comparison of the target Ct with the ITC Ct indicates if a sample is a true positive for the target (i.e. Ct less than or equal to the ITC Ct) or negative (i.e. Ct greater than the ITC Ct). The utility of this approach was demonstrated in a nonhuman primate model of rAAV vector mediated gene doping in vivo and in human genomic DNA spiked with plasmid DNA.
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Human galectin 3 binding protein interacts with recombinant adeno-associated virus type 6.
J. Virol.
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Recombinant adeno-associated viruses (rAAVs) hold enormous potential for human gene therapy. Despite the well-established safety and efficacy of rAAVs for in vivo gene transfer, there is still little information concerning the fate of vectors in blood following systemic delivery. We screened for serum proteins interacting with different AAV serotypes in humans, macaques, dogs, and mice. We report that serotypes rAAV-1, -5, and -6 but not serotypes rAAV-2, -7, -8, -9, and -10 interact in human sera with galectin 3 binding protein (hu-G3BP), a soluble scavenger receptor. Among the three serotypes, rAAV-6 has the most important capacities for binding to G3BP. rAAV-6 also bound G3BP in dog sera but not in macaque and mouse sera. In mice, rAAV-6 interacted with another protein of the innate immune system, C-reactive protein (CRP). Furthermore, interaction of hu-G3BP with rAAV-6 led to the formation of aggregates and hampered transduction when the two were codelivered into the mouse. Based on these data, we propose that species-specific interactions of AAVs with blood proteins may differentially impact vector distribution and efficacy in different animal models.
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Integration frequency and intermolecular recombination of rAAV vectors in non-human primate skeletal muscle and liver.
Mol. Ther.
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The comprehensive characterization of recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) integration frequency and persistence for assessing rAAV vector biosafety in gene therapy is severely limited due to the predominance of episomal rAAV vector genomes maintained in vivo. Introducing rAAV insertional standards (rAIS), we show that linear amplification-mediated (LAM)-PCR and deep sequencing can be used for validated measurement of rAAV integration frequencies. Integration of rAAV2/1 or rAAV2/8, following intramuscular (IM) or regional intravenous (RI) administration of therapeutically relevant vector doses in nine adult non-human primates (NHP), occurs at low frequency between 10(-4) and 10(-5) both in NHP liver and muscle, but with no preference for specific genomic loci. High resolution mapping of inverted terminal repeat (ITR) breakpoints in concatemeric and integrated vector genomes reveals distinct vector recombination hotspots, including large deletions of up to 3 kb. Moreover, retrieval of integrated rAAV genomes indicated approximately threefold increase in liver compared to muscle. This molecular analysis of rAAV persistence in NHP provides a promising basis for a reliable genotoxic risk assessment of rAAV in clinical trials.
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Recombinant adeno-associated viral vector reference standards.
Meth. Enzymol.
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Reference standard materials (RSMs) exist for a variety of biologics including vaccines but are not readily available for gene therapy vectors. To date, a recombinant adeno-associated virus serotype 2 RSM (rAAV2 RSM) has been produced and characterized and was made available to the scientific community in 2010. In addition, a rAAV8 RSM has been produced and will be characterized in the coming months. The use of these reference materials by members of the gene therapy field facilitates the calibration of individual laboratory vector-specific internal standards and the eventual comparison of preclinical and clinical data based on common dosage units. Normalization of data to determine therapeutic dose ranges of rAAV vectors for each particular tissue target and disease indication is important information that can enhance the safety and protection of patients.
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JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.