Hurler disease (mucopolysaccharidosis type I [MPS-I]) is an inherited metabolic disorder characterized by deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme ?-L-iduronidase (IDUA). Currently, the only therapies for MPS-I, enzyme replacement and hematopoietic stem cell transplantation, are generally ineffective for central nervous system manifestations.
The mucopolysaccharidoses (MPSs) are a group of 11 storage diseases caused by disruptions in glycosaminoglycan (GAG) catabolism, leading to their accumulation in lysosomes. Resultant multisystemic disease is manifested by growth delay, hepatosplenomegaly, skeletal dysplasias, cardiopulmonary obstruction, and, in severe MPS I, II, III, and VII, progressive neurocognitive decline. Some MPSs are treated by allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and/or recombinant enzyme replacement therapy (ERT), but effectiveness is limited by central nervous system (CNS) access across the blood-brain barrier. To provide a high level of gene product to the CNS, we tested neonatal intracerebroventricular (ICV) infusion of an adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotype 8 vector transducing the human ?-L-iduronidase gene in MPS I mice. Supranormal levels of iduronidase activity in the brain (including 40× normal levels in the hippocampus) were associated with transduction of neurons in motor and limbic areas identifiable by immunofluorescence staining. The treatment prevented accumulation of GAG and GM3 ganglioside storage materials and emergence of neurocognitive dysfunction in a modified Morris water maze test. The results suggest the potential of improved outcome for MPSs and other neurological diseases when a high level of gene expression can be achieved by direct, early administration of vector to the CNS.
Trinucleotide expansions cause disease by both protein- and RNA-mediated mechanisms. Unexpectedly, we discovered that CAG expansion constructs express homopolymeric polyglutamine, polyalanine, and polyserine proteins in the absence of an ATG start codon. This repeat-associated non-ATG translation (RAN translation) occurs across long, hairpin-forming repeats in transfected cells or when expansion constructs are integrated into the genome in lentiviral-transduced cells and brains. Additionally, we show that RAN translation across human spinocerebellar ataxia type 8 (SCA8) and myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) CAG expansion transcripts results in the accumulation of SCA8 polyalanine and DM1 polyglutamine expansion proteins in previously established SCA8 and DM1 mouse models and human tissue. These results have implications for understanding fundamental mechanisms of gene expression. Moreover, these toxic, unexpected, homopolymeric proteins now should be considered in pathogenic models of microsatellite disorders.
Mucopolysaccharidosis type I (MPS-I; Hurler syndrome) is an inborn error of metabolism caused by lack of the functional lysosomal glycosaminoglycan (GAG)-degrading enzyme ?-L-iduronidase (IDUA). Without treatment, the resulting GAG accumulation causes multisystem dysfunction and death within the first decade. Current treatments include allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT) and enzyme replacement therapy. HSCT ameliorates clinical features and extends life but is not available to all patients, and inadequately corrects the most devastating features of the disease including mental retardation and skeletal deformities. Recent developments suggest that stem cells can be used to deliver needed enzymes to the central nervous system. To test this concept, we transplanted bone marrow-derived normal adult human MultiStem® cells into the cerebral lateral ventricles of immunodeficient MPS-I neonatal mice. Transplanted cells and human-specific DNA were detected in the hippocampal formation, striatum, and other areas of the central nervous system. Brain tissue assays revealed significant long-term decrease in GAG levels in the hippocampus and striatum. Sensorimotor testing 6 months after transplantation demonstrated significantly improved rotarod performance of transplanted mice in comparison to nontransplanted and sham-transplanted control animals. These results suggest that a single injection of MultiStem cells into the cerebral ventricles of neonatal MPS-I mice induces sustained reduction in GAG accumulation within the brain, and modest long-term improvement in sensorimotor function.
Here we provide the first evidence that therapeutic levels of a lysosomal enzyme can bypass the blood-brain barrier following intranasal administration. ?-L-iduronidase (IDUA) activity was detected throughout the brains of IDUA-deficient mice following a single intranasal treatment with concentrated Aldurazyme® (laronidase) and was also detected after intranasal treatment with an adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector expressing human IDUA. These results suggest that intranasal routes of delivery may be efficacious in the treatment of lysosomal storage disorders.
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