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Sample records for gene therapy regulations

  1. Regulated Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Breger, Ludivine; Wettergren, Erika Elgstrand; Quintino, Luis; Lundberg, Cecilia

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy represents a promising approach for the treatment of monogenic and multifactorial neurological disorders. It can be used to replace a missing gene and mutated gene or downregulate a causal gene. Despite the versatility of gene therapy, one of the main limitations lies in the irreversibility of the process: once delivered to target cells, the gene of interest is constitutively expressed and cannot be removed. Therefore, efficient, safe and long-term gene modification requires a system allowing fine control of transgene expression.Different systems have been developed over the past decades to regulate transgene expression after in vivo delivery, either at transcriptional or post-translational levels. The purpose of this chapter is to give an overview on current regulatory system used in the context of gene therapy for neurological disorders. Systems using external regulation of transgenes using antibiotics are commonly used to control either gene expression using tetracycline-controlled transcription or protein levels using destabilizing domain technology. Alternatively, specific promoters of genes that are regulated by disease mechanisms, increasing expression as the disease progresses or decreasing expression as disease regresses, are also examined. Overall, this chapter discusses advantages and drawbacks of current molecular methods for regulated gene therapy in the central nervous system.

  2. Gene regulation in cancer gene therapy strategies.

    PubMed

    Scanlon, Ian; Lehouritis, Panos; Niculescu-Duvaz, Ion; Marais, Richard; Springer, Caroline J

    2003-10-01

    Regulation of expression in gene therapy is considered to be a very desirable goal, preventing toxic effects and improving biological efficacy. A variety of systems have been reported in an ever widening range of applications, this paper describes these systems with specific reference to cancer gene therapy.

  3. Gene therapy on demand: site specific regulation of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Jazwa, Agnieszka; Florczyk, Urszula; Jozkowicz, Alicja; Dulak, Jozef

    2013-08-10

    Since 1990 when the first clinical gene therapy trial was conducted, much attention and considerable promise have been given to this form of treatment. Gene therapy has been used with success in patients suffering from severe combined immunodeficiency syndromes (X-SCID and ADA-deficiency), Leber's congenital amaurosis, hemophilia, β-thalassemia and adrenoleukodystrophy. Last year, the first therapeutic vector (Glybera) for treatment of lipoprotein lipase deficiency has been registered in the European Union. Nevertheless, there are still several numerous issues that need to be improved to make this technique more safe, effective and easily accessible for patients. Introduction of the therapeutic gene to the given cells should provide the level of expression which will restore the production of therapeutic protein to normal values or will provide therapeutic efficacy despite not fully physiological expression. However, in numerous diseases the expression of therapeutic genes has to be kept at certain level for some time, and then might be required to be switched off to be activated again when worsening of the symptoms may aggravate the risk of disease relapse. In such cases the promoters which are regulated by local conditions may be more required. In this article the special emphasis is to discuss the strategies of regulation of gene expression by endogenous stimuli. Particularly, the hypoxia- or miRNA-regulated vectors offer the possibilities of tight but, at the same time, condition-dependent and cell-specific expression. Such means have been already tested in certain pathophysiological conditions. This creates the chance for the translational approaches required for development of effective treatments of so far incurable diseases.

  4. Regulation of Cell and Gene Therapy Medicinal Products in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Lin, Yi-Chu; Wang, Po-Yu; Tsai, Shih-Chih; Lin, Chien-Liang; Tai, Hsuen-Yung; Lo, Chi-Fang; Wu, Shiow-Ing; Chiang, Yu-Mei; Liu, Li-Ling

    2015-01-01

    Owing to the rapid and mature development of emerging biotechnology in the fields of cell culture, cell preservation, and recombinant DNA technology, more and more cell or gene medicinal therapy products have been approved for marketing, to treat serious diseases which have been challenging to treat with current medical practice or medicine. This chapter will briefly introduce the Taiwan Food and Drug Administration (TFDA) and elaborate regulation of cell and gene therapy medicinal products in Taiwan, including regulatory history evolution, current regulatory framework, application and review procedures, and relevant jurisdictional issues. Under the promise of quality, safety, and efficacy of medicinal products, it is expected the regulation and environment will be more flexible, streamlining the process of the marketing approval of new emerging cell or gene therapy medicinal products and providing diverse treatment options for physicians and patients.

  5. Gene Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... cells in an effort to treat or stop disease. Genes contain your DNA — the code that controls much of your body's form and function, from making you grow taller to regulating your body systems. Genes that don't work properly can cause disease. Gene therapy replaces a faulty gene or adds ...

  6. Gene therapy: regulations, ethics and its practicalities in liver disease.

    PubMed

    Jin, Xi; Yang, Yi-Da; Li, You-Ming

    2008-04-21

    Gene therapy is a new and promising approach which opens a new door to the treatment of human diseases. By direct transfer of genetic materials to the target cells, it could exert functions on the level of genes and molecules. It is hoped to be widely used in the treatment of liver disease, especially hepatic tumors by using different vectors encoding the aim gene for anti-tumor activity by activating primary and adaptive immunity, inhibiting oncogene and angiogenesis. Despite the huge curative potential shown in animal models and some pilot clinical trials, gene therapy has been under fierce discussion since its birth in academia and the public domain because of its unexpected side effects and ethical problems. There are other challenges arising from the technique itself like vector design, administration route test and standard protocol exploration. How well we respond will decide the fate of gene therapy clinical medical practice.

  7. Identification of multiple genetic loci that regulate adenovirus gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhang, H-G; Hsu, H-C; Yang, P-A; Yang, X; Wu, Q; Liu, Z; Yi, N; Mountz, J D

    2004-01-01

    A key aspect of the immune response to adenovirus (Ad) gene therapy is the generation of a cytotoxic T-cell (CTL) response. To better understand the genetic network underlying these events, 20 strains of C57BL/6 x DBA/2 (BXD) recombinant inbred (RI) mice were administered with AdLacZ and analyzed at days 7, 21, 30, and 50 for liver beta-galactosidase (LacZ) expression and CTL response. Sera levels of interferon gamma (IFN-gamma), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were analyzed at different times after AdLacZ. There was a distinct strain-dependent expression of LacZ, which was strongly correlated with the CTL response. Among the five BXD RI strains that exhibited significantly prolonged LacZ expression, four also exhibited a marked defect in the production of Ad-specific CTL. There was a strong correlation between the sera levels of IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and IL-6, but cytokine responses were not significantly correlated with LacZ expression or the CTL response. Quantitative trait loci regulating LacZ on day 30 were found on chromosome (Chr) 19 (33 cM) and Chr 15 (42.8 cM). Cytotoxicity mapped to Chr 7 (41.0 and 57.4-65.2 cM), Chr 15 (61.7 cM), and Chr X (27.8 cM). IFN-gamma production mapped to Chr 18 (22, 27, and 32 cM) and Chr 11 (64.0 cM). TNF-alpha and IL-6 production mapped to Chr 6 (91.5 cM) Chr 9 (42.0 cM) and Chr 8 (52 and 73.0 cM). These results indicate that different strains of mice exhibit different pathways for effective clearance of AdLacZ depending on genetic polymorphisms and interactions at multiple genetic loci.

  8. Genes and Gene Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... correctly, a child can have a genetic disorder. Gene therapy is an experimental technique that uses genes to ... or prevent disease. The most common form of gene therapy involves inserting a normal gene to replace an ...

  9. Regulated protein expression for in vivo gene therapy for neurological disorders: progress, strategies, and issues.

    PubMed

    Manfredsson, Fredric P; Bloom, David C; Mandel, Ronald J

    2012-11-01

    The field of in vivo gene therapy has matured to the point where there are numerous clinical trials underway including late-stage clinical trials. Several viral vectors are especially efficient and support lifetime protein expression in the brain and a number of clinical trials are underway for various progressive or chronic neurological disorders including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, and Batten's disease. To date, however, none of the vectors in clinical use have any direct way to reverse or control their transgene product in the event continued protein expression should become problematic. Several schemes that use elements within the vector design have been developed that allow an external drug or pro-drug to alter ongoing protein expression after in vivo gene transfer. The most promising and most studied regulated protein expression methods for in vivo gene transfer are reviewed. In addition, potential scientific and clinical advantages of transgene regulation for gene therapy are discussed.

  10. Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Scheller, E.L.; Krebsbach, P.H.

    2009-01-01

    Gene therapy is defined as the treatment of disease by transfer of genetic material into cells. This review will explore methods available for gene transfer as well as current and potential applications for craniofacial regeneration, with emphasis on future development and design. Though non-viral gene delivery methods are limited by low gene transfer efficiency, they benefit from relative safety, low immunogenicity, ease of manufacture, and lack of DNA insert size limitation. In contrast, viral vectors are nature’s gene delivery machines that can be optimized to allow for tissue-specific targeting, site-specific chromosomal integration, and efficient long-term infection of dividing and non-dividing cells. In contrast to traditional replacement gene therapy, craniofacial regeneration seeks to use genetic vectors as supplemental building blocks for tissue growth and repair. Synergistic combination of viral gene therapy with craniofacial tissue engineering will significantly enhance our ability to repair and replace tissues in vivo. PMID:19641145

  11. Gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Williamson, B

    1982-07-29

    Gene therapy is not yet possible, but may become feasible soon, particularly for well understood gene defects. Although treatment of a patient raises no ethical problems once it can be done well, changing the genes of an early embryo is more difficult, controversial and unlikely to be required clinically.

  12. United States Food and Drug Administration Regulation of Gene and Cell Therapies.

    PubMed

    Bailey, Alexander M; Arcidiacono, Judith; Benton, Kimberly A; Taraporewala, Zenobia; Winitsky, Steve

    2015-01-01

    The United States (US) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is a regulatory agency that has oversight for a wide range of products entering the US market, including gene and cell therapies. The regulatory approach for these products is similar to other medical products within the United States and consists of a multitiered framework of statutes, regulations, and guidance documents. Within this framework, there is considerable flexibility which is necessary due to the biological and technical complexity of these products in general. This chapter provides an overview of the US FDA regulatory oversight of gene and cell therapy products.

  13. Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Thorne, Barb; Takeya, Ryan; Vitelli, Francesca; Swanson, Xin

    2017-03-14

    Gene therapy refers to a rapidly growing field of medicine in which genes are introduced into the body to treat or prevent diseases. Although a variety of methods can be used to deliver the genetic materials into the target cells and tissues, modified viral vectors represent one of the more common delivery routes because of its transduction efficiency for therapeutic genes. Since the introduction of gene therapy concept in the 1970s, the field has advanced considerably with notable clinical successes being demonstrated in many clinical indications in which no standard treatment options are currently available. It is anticipated that the clinical success the field observed in recent years can drive requirements for more scalable, robust, cost effective, and regulatory-compliant manufacturing processes. This review provides a brief overview of the current manufacturing technologies for viral vectors production, drawing attention to the common upstream and downstream production process platform that is applicable across various classes of viral vectors and their unique manufacturing challenges as compared to other biologics. In addition, a case study of an industry-scale cGMP production of an AAV-based gene therapy product performed at 2,000 L-scale is presented. The experience and lessons learned from this largest viral gene therapy vector production run conducted to date as discussed and highlighted in this review should contribute to future development of commercial viable scalable processes for vial gene therapies.

  14. Gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Drugan, A; Miller, O J; Evans, M I

    1987-01-01

    Severe genetic disorders are potentially correctable by the addition of a normal gene into tissues. Although the technical problems involving integration, stable expression, and insertional damage to the treated cell are not yet fully solved, enough scientific progress has already been made to consider somatic cell gene therapy acceptable from both the ethical and scientific viewpoints. The resolutions to problems evolving from somatic cell gene therapy will help to overcome the technical difficulties encountered presently with germ line gene manipulation. This procedure would then become morally permissible as it will cause, in time, a reduction in the pool of abnormal genes in the population. Enhancement genetic engineering is technically feasible but morally unacceptable. Eugenic genetic engineering is not technically possible or ethically permissible in the foreseeable future.

  15. Cartilage tissue engineering: recent advances and perspectives from gene regulation/therapy.

    PubMed

    Li, Kuei-Chang; Hu, Yu-Chen

    2015-05-01

    Diseases in articular cartilages affect millions of people. Despite the relatively simple biochemical and cellular composition of articular cartilages, the self-repair ability of cartilage is limited. Successful cartilage tissue engineering requires intricately coordinated interactions between matrerials, cells, biological factors, and phycial/mechanical factors, and still faces a multitude of challenges. This article presents an overview of the cartilage biology, current treatments, recent advances in the materials, biological factors, and cells used in cartilage tissue engineering/regeneration, with strong emphasis on the perspectives of gene regulation (e.g., microRNA) and gene therapy. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  16. Hypoxia-regulated retinal glial cell-specific promoter for potential gene therapy in disease.

    PubMed

    Prentice, Howard M; Biswal, Manas R; Dorey, C Kathleen; Blanks, Janet C

    2011-11-01

    Retinal Müller cells span the retina and secrete several trophic factors and represent the functional link between blood vessels and neurons, making them attractive targets for gene therapy. Therefore, a hypoxia-regulated, retinal glial cell-specific vector was constructed and tested for its response to hypoxia. A hybrid promoter containing domains of human glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) and several hypoxia-responsive and aerobically silenced elements (HRSE) was incorporated separately into plasmid vectors for generation of self-complementary adeno-associated virus. Müller cells trasfected with plasmids or virus were compared with other cell lines using standard The mouse model of oxygen-induced retinopathy (OIR) was used to analyze retinas from mice exposed to high oxygen or room air to evaluate the induction of the regulated promoter. The regulated promoter was silenced under aerobic conditions in comparison with unregulated promoter in Müller cells. Hypoxia induced a 12-fold and 16-fold increase in promoter activity in primary Müller cells and human Müller cell lines, respectively. In the OIR model, intravitreal injection of the regulated promoter at postnatal day 7 (P7) resulted in high levels of green fluorescent protein expression only in retinal Müller cells at P17. GFP expression was absent in retinas of mice only exposed to room air. In vivo studies confirm normoxia silencing, hypoxic induction, and cell specificity of the regulated promoter in the mouse retina. This hypoxia-regulated, retinal glial cell-specific AAV vector provides a platform for gene therapy within regions of retinal hypoxia which are found in diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration.

  17. Targeted expression of suicide gene by tissue-specific promoter and microRNA regulation for cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Danda, Ravikanth; Krishnan, Gopinath; Ganapathy, Kalaivani; Krishnan, Uma Maheswari; Vikas, Khetan; Elchuri, Sailaja; Chatterjee, Nivedita; Krishnakumar, Subramanian

    2013-01-01

    In order to realise the full potential of cancer suicide gene therapy that allows the precise expression of suicide gene in cancer cells, we used a tissue specific Epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) promoter (EGP-2) that directs transgene Herpes simplex virus-thymidine kinase (HSV-TK) expression preferentially in EpCAM over expressing cancer cells. EpCAM levels are considerably higher in retinoblastoma (RB), a childhood eye cancer with limited expression in normal cells. Use of miRNA regulation, adjacent to the use of the tissue-specific promoter, would provide the second layer of control to the transgene expression only in the tumor cells while sparing the normal cells. To test this hypothesis we cloned let-7b miRNA targets in the 3'UTR region of HSV-TK suicide gene driven by EpCAM promoter because let-7 family miRNAs, including let-7b, were found to be down regulated in the RB tumors and cell lines. We used EpCAM over expressing and let-7 down regulated RB cell lines Y79, WERI-Rb1 (EpCAM (+ve)/let-7b(down-regulated)), EpCAM down regulated, let-7 over expressing normal retinal Müller glial cell line MIO-M1(EpCAM (-ve)/let-7b(up-regulated)), and EpCAM up regulated, let-7b up-regulated normal thyroid cell line N-Thy-Ori-3.1(EpCAM (+ve)/let-7b(up-regulated)) in the study. The cell proliferation was measured by MTT assay, apoptosis was measured by probing cleaved Caspase3, EpCAM and TK expression were quantified by Western blot. Our results showed that the EGP2-promoter HSV-TK (EGP2-TK) construct with 2 or 4 copies of let-7b miRNA targets expressed TK gene only in Y79, WERI-Rb-1, while the TK gene did not express in MIO-M1. In summary, we have developed a tissue-specific, miRNA-regulated dual control vector, which selectively expresses the suicide gene in EpCAM over expressing cells.

  18. Human gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Sandhu, J S; Keating, A; Hozumi, N

    1997-01-01

    Human gene therapy and its application for the treatment of human genetic disorders, such as cystic fibrosis, cancer, and other diseases, are discussed. Gene therapy is a technique in which a functioning gene is inserted into a human cell to correct a genetic error or to introduce a new function to the cell. Many methods, including retroviral vectors and non-viral vectors, have been developed for both ex vivo and in vivo gene transfer into cells. Vectors need to be developed that efficiently transfer genes to target cells, and promoter systems are required that regulate gene expression according to physiologic needs of the host cell. There are several safety and ethical issues related to manipulating the human genome that need to be resolved. Current gene therapy efforts focus on gene insertion into somatic cells only. Gene therapy has potential for the effective treatment of genetic disorders, and gene transfer techniques are being used for basic research, for example, in cancer, to examine the underlying mechanism of disease. There are still many technical obstacles to be overcome before human gene therapy can become a routine procedure. The current human genome project provides the sequences of a vast number of human genes, leading to the identification, characterization, and understanding of genes that are responsible for many human diseases.

  19. Combinatorial control of suicide gene expression by tissue-specific promoter and microRNA regulation for cancer therapy.

    PubMed

    Wu, Chunxiao; Lin, Jiakai; Hong, Michelle; Choudhury, Yukti; Balani, Poonam; Leung, Doreen; Dang, Lam H; Zhao, Ying; Zeng, Jieming; Wang, Shu

    2009-12-01

    Transcriptional targeting using a tissue-specific cellular promoter is proving to be a powerful means for restricting transgene expression in targeted tissues. In the context of cancer suicide gene therapy, this approach may lead to cytotoxic effects in both cancer and nontarget normal cells. Considering microRNA (miRNA) function in post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression, we have developed a viral vector platform combining cellular promoter-based transcriptional targeting with miRNA regulation for a glioma suicide gene therapy in the mouse brain. The therapy employed, in a single baculoviral vector, a glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) gene promoter and the repeated target sequences of three miRNAs that are enriched in astrocytes but downregulated in glioblastoma cells to control the expression of the herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (HSVtk) gene. This resulted in significantly improved in vivo selectivity over the use of a control vector without miRNA regulation, enabling effective elimination of human glioma xenografts while producing negligible toxic effects on normal astrocytes. Thus, incorporating miRNA regulation into a transcriptional targeting vector adds an extra layer of security to prevent off-target transgene expression and should be useful for the development of gene delivery vectors with high targeting specificity for cancer therapy.

  20. The down-regulated ING5 expression in lung cancer: A potential target of gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Shuang; Yang, Xue-feng; Shen, Dao-fu; Gao, Yang; Shi, Shuai; Wu, Ji-cheng; Liu, Hong-xu; Sun, Hong-zhi; Su, Rong-jian; Zheng, Hua-chuan

    2016-01-01

    ING5 can interact with p53, thereby inhibiting cell growth and inducing apoptosis. We found that ING5 overexpression not only inhibited proliferation, migration, and invasion, but also induced G2 arrest, differentiation, autophagy, apoptosis, glycolysis and mitochondrial respiration in lung cancer cells. ING5 transfection up-regulated the expression of Cdc2, ATG13, ATG14, Beclin-1, LC-3B, AIF, cytochrome c, Akt1/2/3, ADFP, PFK-1 and PDPc, while down-regulated the expression of Bcl-2, XIAP, survivin,β-catenin and HXK1. ING5 transfection desensitized cells to the chemotherapy of MG132, paclitaxel, and SAHA, which paralleled with apoptotic alteration. ING5 overexpression suppressed the xenograft tumor growth by inhibiting proliferation and inducing apoptosis. ING5 expression level was significantly higher in normal tissue than that in lung cancer at both protein and mRNA levels. Nuclear ING5 expression was positively correlated with ki-67 expression and cytoplasmic ING5 expression. Cytoplasmic ING5 expression was positively associated with lymph node metastasis, and negatively with age, lymphatic invasion or CPP32 expression. ING5 expression was different in histological classification: squamous cell carcinoma > adenocarcinoma > large cell carcinoma > small cell carcinoma. Taken together, our data suggested that ING5 downregulation might involved in carcinogenesis, growth, and invasion of lung cancer and could be considered as a promising marker to gauge the aggressiveness of lung cancer. It might be employed as a potential target for gene therapy of lung cancer. PMID:27409347

  1. Statin therapy and the expression of genes that regulate calcium homeostasis and membrane repair in skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Draeger, Annette; Sanchez-Freire, Verónica; Monastyrskaya, Katia; Hoppeler, Hans; Mueller, Matthias; Breil, Fabio; Mohaupt, Markus G; Babiychuk, Eduard B

    2010-07-01

    In skeletal muscle of patients with clinically diagnosed statin-associated myopathy, discrete signs of structural damage predominantly localize to the T-tubular region and are suggestive of a calcium leak. The impact of statins on skeletal muscle of non-myopathic patients is not known. We analyzed the expression of selected genes implicated in the molecular regulation of calcium and membrane repair, in lipid homeostasis, myocyte remodeling and mitochondrial function. Microscopic and gene expression analyses were performed using validated TaqMan custom arrays on skeletal muscle biopsies of 72 age-matched subjects who were receiving statin therapy (n = 38), who had discontinued therapy due to statin-associated myopathy (n = 14), and who had never undergone statin treatment (n = 20). In skeletal muscle, obtained from statin-treated, non-myopathic patients, statins caused extensive changes in the expression of genes of the calcium regulatory and the membrane repair machinery, whereas the expression of genes responsible for mitochondrial function or myocyte remodeling was unaffected. Discontinuation of treatment due to myopathic symptoms led to a normalization of gene expression levels, the genes encoding the ryanodine receptor 3, calpain 3, and dystrophin being the most notable exceptions. Hence, even in clinically asymptomatic (non-myopathic) patients, statin therapy leads to an upregulation in the expression of genes that are concerned with skeletal muscle regulation and membrane repair.

  2. NPY and cohorts in regulating appetite, obesity and metabolic syndrome: beneficial effects of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Kalra, S P; Kalra, P S

    2004-08-01

    Neuropeptide Y is the most potent physiological appetite transducer known. The NPY network is the conductor of the hypothalamic appetite regulating orchestra in the arcuate nucleus-paraventricular nucleus (ARC-PVN) of the hypothalamus. NPY and cohorts, AgrP, GABA and adrenergic transmitters, initiate appetitive drive directly through Y1, Y5, GABAA and alpha1 receptors, co-expressed in the magnocellular PVN (mPVN) and ARC neurons and by simultaneously repressing anorexigenic melanocortin signaling in the ARC-PVN axis. The circadian and ultradian rhythmicities in NPY secretion imprint the daily circadian and episodic feeding patterns. Although a number of afferent hormonal signals from the periphery can directly modulate NPYergic signaling, the reciprocal circadian and ultradian rhythmicities of anorexigenic leptin from adipocytes and orexigenic ghrelin from stomach, encode a corresponding pattern of NPY discharge for daily meal patterning. Subtle and progressive derangements produced by environmental and genetic factors in this exquisitely intricate temporal relationship between the two opposing humoral signals and the NPY network promote hyperphagia and abnormal rate of weight gain culminating in obesity and attendant metabolic disorders. Newer insights at cellular and molecular levels demonstrate that a breakdown of the integrated circuit due both to high and low abundance of NPY at target sites, underlies hyperphagia and increased adiposity. Consequently, interruption of NPYergic signaling at a single locus with NPY receptor antagonists may not be the most efficacious therapy to suppress hyperphagia and obesity. Central leptin gene therapy in rodents has been shown to subjugate, i.e. bring under homeostatic control, NPYergic signaling and suppress the age-related and dietary obesity for extended periods and thus shows promise as a newer treatment modality to curb the pandemic of obesity and metabolic syndrome.

  3. Women and Heart Disease - Physiologic Regulation of Gene Delivery and Expression: Bioreducible Polymers and Ischemia-Inducible Gene Therapies for the Treatment of Ischemic Heart Disease

    PubMed Central

    Yockman, James W.; Bull, David A.

    2009-01-01

    Ischemic heart disease (IHD) is the leading cause of death in the United States today. This year over 750,000 women will have a new or recurrent myocardial infarction. Currently, the mainstay of therapy for IHD is revascularization. Increasing evidence, however, suggests that revascularization alone is insufficient for the longer-term management of many patients with IHD. To address these issues, innovative therapies that extend beyond revascularization to protection of the myocyte and preservation of ventricular function are required. The emergence of gene therapy and proteomics offers the potential for innovative prophylactic and treatment strategies for IHD. The goal of our research is to develop therapeutic gene constructs for the treatment of myocardial ischemia that are clinically safe and effective. Toward this end, we describe the development of physiologic regulation of gene delivery and expression using bioreducible polymers and ischemia-inducible gene therapies for the potential treatment of ischemic heart disease in women. PMID:19422868

  4. Regulating germ-line gene therapy to avoid sliding down the slippery slope.

    PubMed

    Pattinson, S D

    2000-01-01

    Many arguments can be made for or against various regulatory approaches towards germ-line gene therapy and its associated research. A popular conclusion is that it ought to be prohibited, and this is commonly defended by use of a slippery slope argument. This paper will begin by outlining the regulatory approaches adopted towards germ-line gene therapy in EU countries, demonstrating the popularity of the restrictive approach. The slippery slope argument will then be examined. A number of variants of the slippery slope argument will be distinguished, highlighting the conceptually different claims made by each. Finally, examples of slippery slope arguments often invoked to support the prohibition of germ-line gene therapy will be examined with regard to the conditions that each must satisfy to form a theoretically sound argument. I will argue that these conditions are rarely given sufficient consideration. For the purposes of this paper, "germ-line gene therapy" is defined as the deliberate genetic modification of germ cells (sperm or oocytes), their precursors, or the cells of early embryos where the germ-line has yet to be segregated.

  5. Gene Therapy for Autoimmune Disease.

    PubMed

    Shu, Shang-An; Wang, Jinjun; Tao, Mi-Hua; Leung, Patrick S C

    2015-10-01

    Advances in understanding the immunological and molecular basis of autoimmune diseases have made gene therapy a promising approach to treat the affected patients. Gene therapy for autoimmune diseases aims to regulate the levels of proinflammatory cytokines or molecules and the infiltration of lymphocytes to the effected sites through successful delivery and expression of therapeutic genes in appropriate cells. The ultimate goal of gene therapy is to restore and maintain the immune tolerance to the relevant autoantigens and improve clinical outcomes for patients. Here, we summarize the recent progress in identifying genes responsible for autoimmune diseases and present examples where gene therapy has been applied as treatments or prevention in autoimmune diseases both in animal models and the clinical trials. Discussion on the advantages and pitfalls of gene therapy strategies employed is provided. The intent of this review is to inspire further studies toward the development of new strategies for successful treatment of autoimmune diseases.

  6. Gene therapy for blindness.

    PubMed

    Sahel, José-Alain; Roska, Botond

    2013-07-08

    Sight-restoring therapy for the visually impaired and blind is a major unmet medical need. Ocular gene therapy is a rational choice for restoring vision or preventing the loss of vision because most blinding diseases originate in cellular components of the eye, a compartment that is optimally suited for the delivery of genes, and many of these diseases have a genetic origin or genetic component. In recent years we have witnessed major advances in the field of ocular gene therapy, and proof-of-concept studies are under way to evaluate the safety and efficacy of human gene therapies. Here we discuss the concepts and recent advances in gene therapy in the retina. Our review discusses traditional approaches such as gene replacement and neuroprotection and also new avenues such as optogenetic therapies. We conjecture that advances in gene therapy in the retina will pave the way for gene therapies in other parts of the brain.

  7. Myocardial gene therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isner, Jeffrey M.

    2002-01-01

    Gene therapy is proving likely to be a viable alternative to conventional therapies in coronary artery disease and heart failure. Phase 1 clinical trials indicate high levels of safety and clinical benefits with gene therapy using angiogenic growth factors in myocardial ischaemia. Although gene therapy for heart failure is still at the pre-clinical stage, experimental data indicate that therapeutic angiogenesis using short-term gene expression may elicit functional improvement in affected individuals.

  8. Gene therapy review.

    PubMed

    Moss, Joseph Anthony

    2014-01-01

    The use of genes to treat disease, more commonly known as gene therapy, is a valid and promising tool to manage and treat diseases that conventional drug therapies cannot cure. Gene therapy holds the potential to control a wide range of diseases, including cystic fibrosis, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and blood diseases. This review assesses the current status of gene therapy, highlighting therapeutic methodologies and applications, terminology, and imaging strategies. This article presents an overview of roadblocks associated with each therapeutic methodology, along with some of the scientific, social, and ethical issues associated with gene therapy.

  9. Power training and postmenopausal hormone therapy affect transcriptional control of specific co-regulated gene clusters in skeletal muscle

    PubMed Central

    Fey, Vidal; Törmäkangas, Timo; Ronkainen, Paula H. A.; Taaffe, Dennis R.; Takala, Timo; Koskinen, Satu; Cheng, Sulin; Puolakka, Jukka; Kujala, Urho M.; Suominen, Harri; Sipilä, Sarianna; Kovanen, Vuokko

    2010-01-01

    At the moment, there is no clear molecular explanation for the steeper decline in muscle performance after menopause or the mechanisms of counteractive treatments. The goal of this genome-wide study was to identify the genes and gene clusters through which power training (PT) comprising jumping activities or estrogen containing hormone replacement therapy (HRT) may affect skeletal muscle properties after menopause. We used musculus vastus lateralis samples from early stage postmenopausal (50–57 years old) women participating in a yearlong randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial with PT and HRT interventions. Using microarray platform with over 24,000 probes, we identified 665 differentially expressed genes. The hierarchical clustering method was used to assort the genes. Additionally, enrichment analysis of gene ontology (GO) terms and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways was carried out to clarify whether assorted gene clusters are enriched with particular functional categories. The analysis revealed transcriptional regulation of 49 GO/KEGG categories. PT upregulated transcription in “response to contraction”—category revealing novel candidate genes for contraction-related regulation of muscle function while HRT upregulated gene expression related to functionality of mitochondria. Moreover, several functional categories tightly related to muscle energy metabolism, development, and function were affected regardless of the treatment. Our results emphasize that during the early stages of the postmenopause, muscle properties are under transcriptional modulation, which both PT and HRT partially counteract leading to preservation of muscle power and potentially reducing the risk for aging-related muscle weakness. More specifically, PT and HRT may function through improving energy metabolism, response to contraction as well as by preserving functionality of the mitochondria. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this

  10. MicroRNA-150-regulated vectors allow lymphocyte-sparing transgene expression in hematopoietic gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Lachmann, N; Jagielska, J; Heckl, D; Brennig, S; Pfaff, N; Maetzig, T; Modlich, U; Cantz, T; Gentner, B; Schambach, A; Moritz, T

    2012-09-01

    Endogenous microRNA (miRNA) expression can be exploited for cell type-specific transgene expression as the addition of miRNA target sequences to transgenic cDNA allows for transgene downregulation specifically in cells expressing the respective miRNAs. Here, we have investigated the potential of miRNA-150 target sequences to specifically suppress gene expression in lymphocytes and thereby prevent transgene-induced lymphotoxicity. Abundance of miRNA-150 expression specifically in differentiated B and T cells was confirmed by quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR. Mono- and bicistronic lentiviral vectors were used to investigate the effect of miRNA-150 target sequences on transgene expression in the lymphohematopoietic system. After in vitro studies demonstrated effective downregulation of transgene expression in murine B220(+) B and CD3(+) T cells, the concept was further verified in a murine transplant model. Again, marked suppression of transgene activity was observed in B220(+) B and CD4(+) or CD8(+) T cells whereas expression in CD11b(+) myeloid cells, lin(-) and lin(-)/Sca1(+) progenitors, or lin(-)/Sca1(+)/c-kit(+) stem cells remained almost unaffected. No toxicity of miRNA-150 targeting in transduced lymphohematopoietic cells was noted. Thus, our results demonstrate the suitability of miRNA-150 targeting to specifically suppress transgene expression in lymphocytes and further support the concept of miRNA targeting for cell type-specific transgene expression in gene therapy approaches.

  11. Cell and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Rao, Rajesh C; Zacks, David N

    2014-01-01

    Replacement or repair of a dysfunctional gene combined with promoting cell survival is a two-pronged approach that addresses an unmet need in the therapy of retinal degenerative diseases. In this chapter, we discuss various strategies toward achieving both goals: transplantation of wild-type cells to replace degenerating cells and to rescue gene function, sequential gene and cell therapy, and in vivo reprogramming of rods to cones. These approaches highlight cutting-edge advances in cell and gene therapy, and cellular lineage conversion in order to devise new therapies for various retinal degenerative diseases.

  12. Gene therapy for haemophilia.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Akshay; Easow Mathew, Manu; Sriganesh, Vasumathi; Neely, Jessica A; Kalipatnapu, Sasank

    2014-11-14

    Haemophilia is a genetic disorder which is characterized by spontaneous or provoked, often uncontrolled, bleeding into joints, muscles and other soft tissues. Current methods of treatment are expensive, challenging and involve regular administration of clotting factors. Gene therapy has recently been prompted as a curative treatment modality. To evaluate the safety and efficacy of gene therapy for treating people with haemophilia A or B. We searched the Cochrane Cystic Fibrosis & Genetic Disorders Group's Coagulopathies Trials Register, compiled from electronic database searches and handsearching of journals and conference abstract books. We also searched the reference lists of relevant articles and reviews.Date of last search: 06 November 2014. Eligible trials included randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials, including controlled clinical trials comparing gene therapy (with or without standard treatment) with standard treatment (factor replacement) or other 'curative' treatment such as stem cell transplantation individuals with haemophilia A or B of all ages who do not have inhibitors to factor VIII or IX. No trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were found. No trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were identified. No randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were identified. Thus, we are unable to determine the effects of gene therapy for haemophilia. Gene therapy for haemophilia is still in its nascent stages and there is a need for well-designed clinical trials to assess the long-term feasibility, success and risks of gene therapy for people with haemophilia.

  13. nanosheets for gene therapy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kou, Zhongyang; Wang, Xin; Yuan, Renshun; Chen, Huabin; Zhi, Qiaoming; Gao, Ling; Wang, Bin; Guo, Zhaoji; Xue, Xiaofeng; Cao, Wei; Guo, Liang

    2014-10-01

    A new class of two-dimensional (2D) nanomaterial, transition metal dichalcogenides (TMDCs) such as MoS2, MoSe2, WS2, and WSe2 which have fantastic physical and chemical properties, has drawn tremendous attention in different fields recently. Herein, we for the first time take advantage of the great potential of MoS2 with well-engineered surface as a novel type of 2D nanocarriers for gene delivery and therapy of cancer. In our system, positively charged MoS2-PEG-PEI is synthesized with lipoic acid-modified polyethylene glycol (LA-PEG) and branched polyethylenimine (PEI). The amino end of positively charged nanomaterials can bind to the negatively charged small interfering RNA (siRNA). After detection of physical and chemical characteristics of the nanomaterial, cell toxicity was evaluated by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay. Polo-like kinase 1 (PLK1) was investigated as a well-known oncogene, which was a critical regulator of cell cycle transmission at multiple levels. Through knockdown of PLK1 with siRNA carried by novel nanovector, qPCR and Western blot were used to measure the interfering efficiency; apoptosis assay was used to detect the transfection effect of PLK1. All results showed that the novel nanocarrier revealed good biocompatibility, reduced cytotoxicity, as well as high gene-carrying ability without serum interference, thus would have great potential for gene delivery and therapy.

  14. Antiangiogenic Eye Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Corydon, Thomas J

    2015-08-01

    The idea of treating disease in humans with genetic material was conceived over two decades ago and with that a promising journey involving development and efficacy studies in cells and animals of a large number of novel therapeutic reagents unfolded. In the footsteps of this process, successful gene therapy treatment of genetic conditions in humans has shown clear signs of efficacy. Notably, significant advancements using gene supplementation and silencing strategies have been made in the field of ocular gene therapy, thereby pinpointing ocular gene therapy as one of the compelling "actors" bringing gene therapy to the clinic. Most of all, this success has been facilitated because of (1) the fact that the eye is an effortlessly accessible, exceedingly compartmentalized, and immune-privileged organ offering a unique advantage as a gene therapy target, and (2) significant progress toward efficient, sustained transduction of cells within the retina having been achieved using nonintegrating vectors based on recombinant adeno-associated virus and nonintegrating lentivirus vectors. The results from in vivo experiments and trials suggest that treatment of inherited retinal dystrophies, ocular angiogenesis, and inflammation with gene therapy can be both safe and effective. Here, the progress of ocular gene therapy is examined with special emphasis on the potential use of RNAi- and protein-based antiangiogenic gene therapy to treat exudative age-related macular degeneration.

  15. History of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Wirth, Thomas; Parker, Nigel; Ylä-Herttuala, Seppo

    2013-08-10

    Two decades after the initial gene therapy trials and more than 1700 approved clinical trials worldwide we not only have gained much new information and knowledge regarding gene therapy in general, but also learned to understand the concern that has persisted in society. Despite the setbacks gene therapy has faced, success stories have increasingly emerged. Examples for these are the positive recommendation for a gene therapy product (Glybera) by the EMA for approval in the European Union and the positive trials for the treatment of ADA deficiency, SCID-X1 and adrenoleukodystrophy. Nevertheless, our knowledge continues to grow and during the course of time more safety data has become available that helps us to develop better gene therapy approaches. Also, with the increased understanding of molecular medicine, we have been able to develop more specific and efficient gene transfer vectors which are now producing clinical results. In this review, we will take a historical view and highlight some of the milestones that had an important impact on the development of gene therapy. We will also discuss briefly the safety and ethical aspects of gene therapy and address some concerns that have been connected with gene therapy as an important therapeutic modality.

  16. [Gene therapy and ethics].

    PubMed

    Müller, H; Rehmann-Sutter, C

    1995-01-10

    Gene therapy represents a new strategy to treat human disorders. It was originally conceived as a cure for severe monogenetic disorders. Since its conception, the spectrum of possible application for gene therapy has been to include the treatment of acquired diseases, such as various forms of cancer and some viral infections, most notably human immune deficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B virus. Since somatic gene therapy does not cause substantially new ethical problems, it has gained broad approval. This is by no means the case with germ-line gene therapy. Practically all bodies who were evaluating the related ethical aspects wanted to ban its medical application on grounds of fundamental and pragmatic considerations. In this review, practical and ethical views concerning gene therapy are summarized which were presented at the "Junitagung 1994" of the Swiss Society for Biomedical Ethics in Basle.

  17. A next step in adeno-associated virus-mediated gene therapy for neurological diseases: regulation and targeting

    PubMed Central

    Chtarto, Abdelwahed; Bockstael, Olivier; Tshibangu, Terence; Dewitte, Olivier; Levivier, Marc; Tenenbaum, Liliane

    2013-01-01

    Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors mediating long term transgene expression are excellent gene therapy tools for chronic neurological diseases. While rAAV2 was the first serotype tested in the clinics, more efficient vectors derived from the rh10 serotype are currently being evaluated and other serotypes are likely to be tested in the near future. In addition, aside from the currently used stereotaxy-guided intraparenchymal delivery, new techniques for global brain transduction (by intravenous or intra-cerebrospinal injections) are very promising. Various strategies for therapeutic gene delivery to the central nervous system have been explored in human clinical trials in the past decade. Canavan disease, a genetic disease caused by an enzymatic deficiency, was the first to be approved. Three gene transfer paradigms for Parkinson's disease have been explored: converting L-dopa into dopamine through AADC gene delivery in the putamen; synthesizing GABA through GAD gene delivery in the overactive subthalamic nucleus and providing neurotrophic support through neurturin gene delivery in the nigro-striatal pathway. These pioneer clinical trials demonstrated the safety and tolerability of rAAV delivery in the human brain at moderate doses. Therapeutic effects however, were modest, emphasizing the need for higher doses of the therapeutic transgene product which could be achieved using more efficient vectors or expression cassettes. This will require re-addressing pharmacological aspects, with attention to which cases require either localized and cell-type specific expression or efficient brain-wide transgene expression, and when it is necessary to modulate or terminate the administration of transgene product. The ongoing development of targeted and regulated rAAV vectors is described. PMID:23331189

  18. Gene therapy for haemophilia.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Akshay; Easow Mathew, Manu; Sriganesh, Vasumathi; Reiss, Ulrike M

    2016-12-20

    Haemophilia is a genetic disorder characterized by spontaneous or provoked, often uncontrolled, bleeding into joints, muscles and other soft tissues. Current methods of treatment are expensive, challenging and involve regular administration of clotting factors. Gene therapy has recently been prompted as a curative treatment modality. This is an update of a published Cochrane Review. To evaluate the safety and efficacy of gene therapy for treating people with haemophilia A or B. We searched the Cochrane Cystic Fibrosis & Genetic Disorders Group's Coagulopathies Trials Register, compiled from electronic database searches and handsearching of journals and conference abstract books. We also searched the reference lists of relevant articles and reviews.Date of last search: 18 August 2016. Eligible trials include randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials, including controlled clinical trials comparing gene therapy (with or without standard treatment) with standard treatment (factor replacement) or other 'curative' treatment such as stem cell transplantation for individuals with haemophilia A or B of all ages who do not have inhibitors to factor VIII or IX. No trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were found. No trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were identified. No randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials of gene therapy for haemophilia were identified. Thus, we are unable to determine the safety and efficacy of gene therapy for haemophilia. Gene therapy for haemophilia is still in its nascent stages and there is a need for well-designed clinical trials to assess the long-term feasibility, success and risks of gene therapy for people with haemophilia.

  19. Parkinson's disease: gene therapies.

    PubMed

    Coune, Philippe G; Schneider, Bernard L; Aebischer, Patrick

    2012-04-01

    With the recent development of effective gene delivery systems, gene therapy for the central nervous system is finding novel applications. Here, we review existing viral vectors and discuss gene therapy strategies that have been proposed for Parkinson's disease. To date, most of the clinical trials were based on viral vectors to deliver therapeutic transgenes to neurons within the basal ganglia. Initial trials used genes to relieve the major motor symptoms caused by nigrostriatal degeneration. Although these new genetic approaches still need to prove more effective than existing symptomatic treatments, there is a need for disease-modifying strategies. The investigation of the genetic factors implicated in Parkinson's disease is providing precious insights in disease pathology that, combined with innovative gene delivery systems, will hopefully offer novel opportunities for gene therapy interventions to slow down, or even halt disease progression.

  20. Gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Hortelano, G; Chang, P L

    2000-01-01

    Hemophilia A and B are X-linked genetic disorders caused by deficiency of the coagulation factors VIII and IX, respectively. Because of the health hazards and costs of current product replacement therapy, much effort is devoted to the development of gene therapy for these disorders. Approaches to gene therapy for the hemophilias include: ex vivo gene therapy in which cells from the intended recipients are explanted, genetically modified to secrete Factor VIII or IX, and reimplanted into the donor; in vivo gene therapy in which Factor VIII or IX encoding vectors are directly injected into the recipient; and non-autologous gene therapy in which universal cell lines engineered to secrete Factor VIII or IX are enclosed in immuno-protective devices before implantation into recipients. Research into these approaches is aided by the many murine and canine models available. While problems of achieving high and sustained levels of factor delivery, and issues related to efficacy, safety and cost are still to be resolved, progress in gene therapy for the hemophilias has been encouraging and is likely to reach human clinical trial in the foreseeable future.

  1. Gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Chuah, M K; Evens, H; VandenDriessche, T

    2013-06-01

    Hemophilia A and B are X-linked monogenic disorders resulting from deficiencies of factor VIII and FIX, respectively. Purified clotting factor concentrates are currently intravenously administered to treat hemophilia, but this treatment is non-curative. Therefore, gene-based therapies for hemophilia have been developed to achieve sustained high levels of clotting factor expression to correct the clinical phenotype. Over the past two decades, different types of viral and non-viral gene delivery systems have been explored for hemophilia gene therapy research with a variety of target cells, particularly hepatocytes, hematopoietic stem cells, skeletal muscle cells, and endothelial cells. Lentiviral and adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based vectors are among the most promising vectors for hemophilia gene therapy. In preclinical hemophilia A and B animal models, the bleeding phenotype was corrected with these vectors. Some of these promising preclinical results prompted clinical translation to patients suffering from a severe hemophilic phenotype. These patients receiving gene therapy with AAV vectors showed long-term expression of therapeutic FIX levels, which is a major step forwards in this field. Nevertheless, the levels were insufficient to prevent trauma or injury-induced bleeding episodes. Another challenge that remains is the possible immune destruction of gene-modified cells by effector T cells, which are directed against the AAV vector antigens. It is therefore important to continuously improve the current gene therapy approaches to ultimately establish a real cure for hemophilia.

  2. Apoptotic genes in cancer therapy.

    PubMed

    Opalka, Bertram; Dickopp, Alexandra; Kirch, Hans-Christoph

    2002-01-01

    Induction of apoptosis in malignant cells is a major goal of cancer therapy in general and of certain cancer gene therapy strategies in particular. Numerous apoptosis-regulating genes have been evaluated for this purpose. Besides the most prominent p53 gene others include p16, p21, p27, E2F genes, FHIT, PTEN and CASPASE genes. Recently, the potential for therapy of an adenoviral gene, E1A, known for a long time for its apoptosis-inducing activity, has been discovered. In experimental settings, these genes have proven their tumor-suppressive and apoptosis-inducing activity. Clinical trials are currently being performed with selected genes. By far the most studies transfer the p53 gene using retro- or adenoviral vectors. Disease stabilization or other benefits were observed in a limited number of patients when p53 was applied alone or in combination with cytotoxic drugs. A second proapoptotic gene that has entered clinical trials is adenovirus E1A. Here, too, disease stabilization as well as/or local regression in one case have been demonstrated in selected patients. In all cases, side effects were tolerable. To further improve E1A as a therapeutic transgene, we have deleted transforming domains from the adenovirus 5 and 12 13S cDNAs. Mutants were derived which had completely lost their transforming activity in combination with the E1B oncogene but retained a pronounced tumor-suppressive activity. Cells transduced with these constructs showed a highly reduced ability to grow in soft agar, and tumor growth in nude mice could be substantially suppressed. Outgrowing tumors had lost E1A expression when analyzed in Western blots. These E1A constructs may represent valuable tools for cancer gene therapy in the future.

  3. Gene therapy in periodontics.

    PubMed

    Chatterjee, Anirban; Singh, Nidhi; Saluja, Mini

    2013-03-01

    GENES are made of DNA - the code of life. They are made up of two types of base pair from different number of hydrogen bonds AT, GC which can be turned into instruction. Everyone inherits genes from their parents and passes them on in turn to their children. Every person's genes are different, and the changes in sequence determine the inherited differences between each of us. Some changes, usually in a single gene, may cause serious diseases. Gene therapy is 'the use of genes as medicine'. It involves the transfer of a therapeutic or working gene copy into specific cells of an individual in order to repair a faulty gene copy. Thus it may be used to replace a faulty gene, or to introduce a new gene whose function is to cure or to favorably modify the clinical course of a condition. It has a promising era in the field of periodontics. Gene therapy has been used as a mode of tissue engineering in periodontics. The tissue engineering approach reconstructs the natural target tissue by combining four elements namely: Scaffold, signaling molecules, cells and blood supply and thus can help in the reconstruction of damaged periodontium including cementum, gingival, periodontal ligament and bone.

  4. Gene therapy for bone regeneration.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jeffrey; Sun, Michael H; Kang, Quan; Peng, Ying; Jiang, Wei; Luu, Hue H; Luo, Qing; Park, Jae Yoon; Li, Yien; Haydon, Rex C; He, Tong-Chuan

    2005-04-01

    Efficacious bone regeneration could revolutionize the clinical management of many bone and musculoskeletal disorders. Bone has the unique ability to regenerate and continuously remodel itself throughout life. However, clinical situations arise when bone is unable to heal itself, as with segmental bone loss, fracture non-union, and failed spinal fusion. This leads to significant morbidity and mortality. Current attempts at improved bone healing have been met with limited success, fueling the development of improved techniques. Gene therapy in many ways represents an ideal approach for augmenting bone regeneration. Gene therapy allows specific gene products to be delivered to a precise anatomic location. In addition, the level of transgene expression as well as the duration of expression can be regulated with current techniques. For bone regeneration, the gene of interest should be delivered to the fracture site, expressed at appropriate levels, and then deactivated once the fracture has healed. Delivery of biological factors, mostly bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs), has yielded promising results both in animal and clinical studies. There has also been tremendous work on discovering new growth factors and exploring previously defined ones. Finally, significant advances are being made in the delivery systems of the genes, ranging from viral and non-viral vectors to tissue engineering scaffolds. Despite some public hesitation to gene therapy, its use has great potential to expand our ability to treat a variety of human bone and musculoskeletal disorders. It is conceivable that in the near future gene therapy can be utilized to induce bone formation in virtually any region of the body in a minimally invasive manner. As bone biology and gene therapy research progresses, the goal of successful human gene transfer for augmentation of bone regeneration draws nearer.

  5. Gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Ponder, Katherine P

    2006-09-01

    This review will highlight the progress achieved in the past 2 years on using gene therapy to treat hemophilia in animals and humans. There has been substantial progress in using gene therapy to treat animals with hemophilia. Novel approaches for hemophilia A in mice include expression of Factor VIII in blood cells or platelets derived from ex-vivo transduced hematopoietic stem cells, or in-vivo transfer of transposons expressing Factor VIII into endothelial cells or hepatocytes. Advances in large-animal models include the demonstration that neonatal administration of a retroviral vector expressing canine Factor VIII completely corrected hemophilia A in dogs, and that double-stranded adeno-associated virus vectors resulted in expression of Factor IX that is 28-fold that obtained using single-stranded adeno-associated virus vectors. In humans, one hemophilia B patient achieved 10% of normal activity after liver-directed gene therapy with a single-stranded adeno-associated virus vector expressing human Factor IX. Expression fell at 1 month, however, which was likely due to an immune response to the modified cells. Gene therapy has been successful in a patient with hemophilia B, but expression was unstable due to an immune response. Abrogating immune responses is the next major hurdle for achieving long-lasting gene therapy.

  6. Gene therapy for newborns.

    PubMed

    Kohn, D B; Parkman, R

    1997-07-01

    Application of gene therapy to treat genetic and infectious diseases may have several advantages if performed in newborns. Because of the minimal adverse effect of the underlying disease on cells of the newborn, the relatively small size of infants, and the large amount of future growth, gene therapy may be more successful in newborns than in older children or adults. The presence of umbilical cord blood from newborns provides a unique and susceptible target for the genetic modification of hematopoietic stem cells. In our first trial of gene therapy in newborns, we inserted a normal adenosine deaminase gene into umbilical cord blood cells of three neonates with a congenital immune deficiency. The trial demonstrated the successful transduction and engraftment of stem cells, which continue to contribute to leukocyte production more than 3 years later. A similar approach may be taken to insert genes that inhibit replication of HIV-1 into umbilical cord blood cells of HIV-1-infected neonates. Many other metabolic and infectious disorders could be treated by gene therapy during the neonatal period if prenatal diagnoses are made and the appropriate technical and regulatory requirements have been met.

  7. [The cell-type-specific HSV-tk gene expression of suicide gene therapy system regulated by lens-specific promoter LEP503].

    PubMed

    Jiang, Yong-xiang; Lu, Yi; Liu, Tian-jin; Yang, Jin; Wu, Xin-hua

    2012-09-01

    To explore the specific expression of HSV-tk gene and killing effects on ocular leading cells of the enhanced specific HSV-tk/GCV gene therapy system regulated by lens-specific promoter LEP503. Experimental research. The enhanced specific HSV-tk/GCV gene system of two vectors were constructed (Lenti-LEP503-HSVtk-Cre and Lenti-HPGK-Loxp-EGFP-pA-Loxp-HSVtk). The lentiviral vectors were produced by transient transduction of transfering vectors, packaging vectors and enveloping vector into 293T cells. Virus was collected with ultracentrifugation and resuspended with 1 ml phosphate buffered saline and stored at -80°C. The HLEC and RPEC, NIH3T3, 293T cells were transduced with the enhanced specific HSV-tk gene system. The specific expressions of EGFP and HSV-tk were detected by fluorescence microscopy, flow cytometry and RT-PCR. The killing effects of HLEC and RPEC at the concentration of 20 mg/L GCV were assayed and compared by flow cytometry and CCK-8 kit. Difference of RPE cell viability among groups was evaluated by analysis of variance (ANOVA). Expression efficiency of EGFP in RPEC group was 62.3%, 68.3% in NIH3T3 group, 75.8% in 293T group, whereas 17.5% in HLEC group. There was higher expression of HSV-tk at mRNA level in HLEC group than that in RPEC group. The relative intensity of HSV-tk mRNA in HLEC group transduced with the enhanced specific HSV-tk gene system was 4.01, whereas 0.29 in RPEC group. At the concentration of 20 mg/L GCV after 72 hours, the percentage of apoptosis detected by the flow cytometry in HLEC group transduced by the enhanced specific HSV-tk gene system was 76.51%, and 2.44% in RPEC group. There was no significant difference in the RPE cell viability among the enhanced specific HSV-tk gene combination-RPE group, normal-RPE group and negative-RPE control group at the concentration of 20 mg/L GCV after 72 hours (MD(1) = -0.047, P = 0.671; MD(2) = 0.027, P = 0.912). The enhanced specific HSV-tk gene system express HSV-tk selectively in HLEC

  8. Gene based therapies for kidney regeneration.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Manoe J; Arcolino, Fanny O; Schoor, Perry; Kok, Robbert Jan; Mastrobattista, Enrico

    2016-11-05

    In this review we provide an overview of the expanding molecular toolbox that is available for gene based therapies and how these therapies can be used for a large variety of kidney diseases. Gene based therapies range from restoring gene function in genetic kidney diseases to steering complex molecular pathways in chronic kidney disorders, and can provide a treatment or cure for diseases that otherwise may not be targeted. This approach involves the delivery of recombinant DNA sequences harboring therapeutic genes to improve cell function and thereby promote kidney regeneration. Depending on the therapy, the recombinant DNA will express a gene that directly plays a role in the function of the cell (gene addition), that regulates the expression of an endogenous gene (gene regulation), or that even changes the DNA sequence of endogenous genes (gene editing). Some interventions involve permanent changes in the genome whereas others are only temporary and leave no trace. Efficient and safe delivery are important steps for all gene based therapies and also depend on the mode of action of the therapeutic gene. Here we provide examples on how the different methods can be used to treat various diseases, which technologies are now emerging (such as gene repair through CRISPR/Cas9) and what the opportunities, perspectives, potential and the limitations of these therapies are for the treatment of kidney diseases.

  9. Gene Therapy for Skin Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Gorell, Emily; Nguyen, Ngon; Lane, Alfred; Siprashvili, Zurab

    2014-01-01

    The skin possesses qualities that make it desirable for gene therapy, and studies have focused on gene therapy for multiple cutaneous diseases. Gene therapy uses a vector to introduce genetic material into cells to alter gene expression, negating a pathological process. This can be accomplished with a variety of viral vectors or nonviral administrations. Although results are promising, there are several potential pitfalls that must be addressed to improve the safety profile to make gene therapy widely available clinically. PMID:24692191

  10. Alphaviruses in Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lundstrom, Kenneth

    2015-01-01

    Alphavirus vectors present an attractive approach for gene therapy applications due to the rapid and simple recombinant virus particle production and their broad range of mammalian host cell transduction. Mainly three types of alphavirus vectors, namely naked RNA, recombinant particles and DNA/RNA layered vectors, have been subjected to preclinical studies with the goal of achieving prophylactic or therapeutic efficacy, particularly in oncology. In this context, immunization with alphavirus vectors has provided protection against challenges with tumor cells. Moreover, alphavirus intratumoral and systemic delivery has demonstrated substantial tumor regression and significant prolonged survival rates in various animal tumor models. Recent discoveries of the strong association of RNA interference and disease have accelerated gene therapy based approaches, where alphavirus-based gene delivery can play an important role. PMID:25961488

  11. Improvement in reproductive parameters in hypogonadal female mice by regulated gene replacement therapy in the central nervous system.

    PubMed

    Jeong, K-H; Bakowska, J C; Song, I O; Fu, N; Breakefield, X O; Kaiser, U B

    2007-07-01

    One of the challenges of gene targeting is to achieve regulated transgene expression in specific target cells. The hypogonadal (hpg) mice are genetically deficient in hypothalamic gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) production due to a deletion in the GnRH gene, resulting in hypogonadotropic hypogonadism. Here we show an improvement in reproductive parameters of adult female homozygous hpg mice by direct infusion into the hypothalamic preoptic area (POA) of a herpes simplex virus (HSV)-based amplicon vector containing a 13.5 kb genomic fragment encoding the GnRH gene together with its cognate promoter and regulatory elements. Following vector injection, GnRH-expressing neurons were detected in the POA, and pituitary and plasma gonadotropin levels as well as ovarian and uterine weights increased. In addition, a subset of injected hpg mice demonstrated cyclic estrous changes, consistent with regulated control of GnRH production. Administration of kisspeptin-10 resulted in an increase in plasma luteinizing hormone levels, further supporting appropriate regulation of the introduced GnRH transgene. These findings indicate that delivery of the GnRH gene resulted in selective neuronal expression of GnRH and regulated hypothalamic GnRH release. To our knowledge, this is the first example of the correct targeting of a gene under its cognate promoter to neurons resulting in selective and regulated synthesis of a biologically active peptide, and thus may have a wide range of applications in the treatment of human disorders.

  12. Regulation of the CCN genes by vitamin D: A possible adjuvant therapy in the treatment of cancer and fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Piszczatowski, Richard T; Lents, Nathan H

    2016-10-01

    The CCN family is composed of six cysteine-rich, modular, and conserved proteins whose functions span a variety of tissues and include cell proliferation, adhesion, angiogenesis, and wound healing. Roles for the CCN proteins throughout the entire body including the skin, kidney, brain, blood vessels, hematopoietic compartment and others, are continuously being elucidated. Likewise, an understanding of the regulation of this important gene family is constantly becoming clearer, through identification of transcription factors that directly activate, repress, or respond to upstream cell signaling pathways, as well as other forms of gene expression control. Vitamin D (1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 or calcitriol), a vitamin essential for numerous biological processes, acts as a potent gene expression modulator. The regulation of the CCN gene family members by calcitriol has been described in many contexts. Here, we provide a concise and thorough overview of what is known about calcitriol and its regulation of the CCN genes, and argue that its regulation is of physiological importance in a wide breadth of tissues in which CCN genes function. In addition, we highlight the effects of vitamin D on CCN gene expression in the setting of two common pathologic conditions, fibrosis and cancer, and propose that the therapeutic effects of vitamin D3 described in these disease states may in part be attributable to CCN gene modulation. As vitamin D is perfectly safe in a wide range of doses and already showing promise as an adjuvant therapeutic agent, a deeper understanding of its control of CCN gene expression may have profound implications in clinical management of disease.

  13. Gene Therapy and Children (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Old Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Gene Therapy and Children KidsHealth > For Parents > Gene Therapy and ... by a "bad" gene. continue Two Types of Gene Therapy The two forms of gene therapy are: Somatic ...

  14. The ethics of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Chan, Sarah; Harris, John

    2006-10-01

    Recent developments have progressed in areas of science that pertain to gene therapy and its ethical implications. This review discusses the current state of therapeutic gene technologies, including stem cell therapies and genetic modification, and identifies ethical issues of concern in relation to the science of gene therapy and its application, including the ethics of embryonic stem cell research and therapeutic cloning, the risks associated with gene therapy, and the ethics of clinical research in developing new therapeutic technologies. Additionally, ethical issues relating to genetic modification itself are considered: the significance of the human genome, the distinction between therapy and enhancement, and concerns regarding gene therapy as a eugenic practice.

  15. Gene therapy for mucopolysaccharidosis

    PubMed Central

    Ponder, Katherine P; Haskins, Mark E

    2012-01-01

    Mucopolysaccharidoses (MPS) are due to deficiencies in activities of lysosomal enzymes that degrade glycosaminoglycans. Some attempts at gene therapy for MPS in animal models have involved intravenous injection of vectors derived from an adeno-associated virus (AAV), adenovirus, retrovirus or a plasmid, which primarily results in expression in liver and secretion of the relevant enzyme into blood. Most vectors can correct disease in liver and spleen, although correction in other organs including the brain requires high enzyme activity in the blood. Alternative approaches are to transduce hematopoietic stem cells, or to inject a vector locally into difficult-to-reach sites such as the brain. Gene therapy holds great promise for providing a long-lasting therapeutic effect for MPS if safety issues can be resolved. PMID:17727324

  16. Gene therapy oversight: lessons for nanobiotechnology.

    PubMed

    Wolf, Susan M; Gupta, Rishi; Kohlhepp, Peter

    2009-01-01

    Oversight of human gene transfer research ("gene therapy") presents an important model with potential application to oversight of nanobiology research on human participants. Gene therapy oversight adds centralized federal review at the National Institutes of Health's Office of Biotechnology Activities and its Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee to standard oversight of human subjects research at the researcher's institution (by the Institutional Review Board and, for some research, the Institutional Biosafety Committee) and at the federal level by the Office for Human Research Protections. The Food and Drug Administration's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research oversees human gene transfer research in parallel, including approval of protocols and regulation of products. This article traces the evolution of this dual oversight system; describes how the system is already addressing nanobiotechnology in gene transfer: evaluates gene therapy oversight based on public opinion, the literature, and preliminary expert elicitation; and offers lessons of the gene therapy oversight experience for oversight of nanobiotechnology.

  17. Transposons for gene therapy!

    PubMed

    Ivics, Zoltán; Izsvák, Zsuzsanna

    2006-10-01

    Gene therapy is a promising strategy for the treatment of several inherited and acquired human diseases. Several vector platforms exist for the delivery of therapeutic nucleic acids into cells. Vectors based on viruses are very efficient at introducing gene constructs into cells, but their use has been associated with genotoxic effects of vector integration or immunological complications due to repeated administration in vivo. Non-viral vectors are easier to engineer and manufacture, but their efficient delivery into cells is a major challenge, and the lack of their chromosomal integration precludes long-term therapeutic effects. Transposable elements are non-viral gene delivery vehicles found ubiquitously in nature. Transposon-based vectors have the capacity of stable genomic integration and long-lasting expression of transgene constructs in cells. Molecular reconstruction of Sleeping Beauty, an ancient transposon in fish, represents a cornerstone in applying transposition-mediated gene delivery in vertebrate species, including humans. This review summarizes the state-of-the-art in the application of transposable elements for therapeutic gene transfer, and identifies key targets for the development of transposon-based gene vectors with enhanced efficacy and safety for human applications.

  18. Differential potassium channel gene regulation in BXD mice reveals novel targets for pharmacogenetic therapies to reduce heavy alcohol drinking.

    PubMed

    Rinker, Jennifer A; Fulmer, Diana B; Trantham-Davidson, Heather; Smith, Maren L; Williams, Robert W; Lopez, Marcelo F; Randall, Patrick K; Chandler, L Judson; Miles, Michael F; Becker, Howard C; Mulholland, Patrick J

    2017-02-01

    Alcohol (ethanol) dependence is a chronic relapsing brain disorder partially influenced by genetics and characterized by an inability to regulate harmful levels of drinking. Emerging evidence has linked genes that encode KV7, KIR, and KCa2 K(+) channels with variation in alcohol-related behaviors in rodents and humans. This led us to experimentally test relations between K(+) channel genes and escalation of drinking in a chronic-intermittent ethanol (CIE) exposure model of dependence in BXD recombinant inbred strains of mice. Transcript levels for K(+) channel genes in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and nucleus accumbens (NAc) covary with voluntary ethanol drinking in a non-dependent cohort. Transcripts that encode KV7 channels covary negatively with drinking in non-dependent BXD strains. Using a pharmacological approach to validate the genetic findings, C57BL/6J mice were allowed intermittent access to ethanol to establish baseline consumption before they were treated with retigabine, an FDA-approved KV7 channel positive modulator. Systemic administration significantly reduced drinking, and consistent with previous evidence, retigabine was more effective at reducing voluntary consumption in high-drinking than low-drinking subjects. We evaluated the specific K(+) channel genes that were most sensitive to CIE exposure and identified a gene subset in the NAc and PFC that were dysregulated in the alcohol-dependent BXD cohort. CIE-induced modulation of nine genes in the NAc and six genes in the PFC covaried well with the changes in drinking induced by ethanol dependence. Here we identified novel candidate genes in the NAc and PFC that are regulated by ethanol dependence and correlate with voluntary drinking in non-dependent and dependent BXD mice. The findings that Kcnq expression correlates with drinking and that retigabine reduces consumption suggest that KV7 channels could be pharmacogenetic targets to treat individuals with alcohol addiction.

  19. Gene therapy in pancreatic cancer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Si-Xue; Xia, Zhong-Sheng; Zhong, Ying-Qiang

    2014-10-07

    Pancreatic cancer (PC) is a highly lethal disease and notoriously difficult to treat. Only a small proportion of PC patients are eligible for surgical resection, whilst conventional chemoradiotherapy only has a modest effect with substantial toxicity. Gene therapy has become a new widely investigated therapeutic approach for PC. This article reviews the basic rationale, gene delivery methods, therapeutic targets and developments of laboratory research and clinical trials in gene therapy of PC by searching the literature published in English using the PubMed database and analyzing clinical trials registered on the Gene Therapy Clinical Trials Worldwide website (http://www. wiley.co.uk/genmed/ clinical). Viral vectors are main gene delivery tools in gene therapy of cancer, and especially, oncolytic virus shows brighter prospect due to its tumor-targeting property. Efficient therapeutic targets for gene therapy include tumor suppressor gene p53, mutant oncogene K-ras, anti-angiogenesis gene VEGFR, suicide gene HSK-TK, cytosine deaminase and cytochrome p450, multiple cytokine genes and so on. Combining different targets or combination strategies with traditional chemoradiotherapy may be a more effective approach to improve the efficacy of cancer gene therapy. Cancer gene therapy is not yet applied in clinical practice, but basic and clinical studies have demonstrated its safety and clinical benefits. Gene therapy will be a new and promising field for the treatment of PC.

  20. Gene therapy in pancreatic cancer

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Si-Xue; Xia, Zhong-Sheng; Zhong, Ying-Qiang

    2014-01-01

    Pancreatic cancer (PC) is a highly lethal disease and notoriously difficult to treat. Only a small proportion of PC patients are eligible for surgical resection, whilst conventional chemoradiotherapy only has a modest effect with substantial toxicity. Gene therapy has become a new widely investigated therapeutic approach for PC. This article reviews the basic rationale, gene delivery methods, therapeutic targets and developments of laboratory research and clinical trials in gene therapy of PC by searching the literature published in English using the PubMed database and analyzing clinical trials registered on the Gene Therapy Clinical Trials Worldwide website (http://www. wiley.co.uk/genmed/ clinical). Viral vectors are main gene delivery tools in gene therapy of cancer, and especially, oncolytic virus shows brighter prospect due to its tumor-targeting property. Efficient therapeutic targets for gene therapy include tumor suppressor gene p53, mutant oncogene K-ras, anti-angiogenesis gene VEGFR, suicide gene HSK-TK, cytosine deaminase and cytochrome p450, multiple cytokine genes and so on. Combining different targets or combination strategies with traditional chemoradiotherapy may be a more effective approach to improve the efficacy of cancer gene therapy. Cancer gene therapy is not yet applied in clinical practice, but basic and clinical studies have demonstrated its safety and clinical benefits. Gene therapy will be a new and promising field for the treatment of PC. PMID:25309069

  1. Cardiac Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Chaanine, Antoine H.; Kalman, Jill; Hajjar, Roger J.

    2010-01-01

    Heart failure is a chronic progressive disorder where frequent and recurrent hospitalizations are associated with high mortality and morbidity. The incidence and the prevalence of this disease will increase with the increase in the number of the aging population of the United States. Understanding the molecular pathology and pathophysiology of this disease will uncover novel targets and therapies that can restore the function or attenuate the damage of malfunctioning cardiomyocytes by gene therapy that becomes an interesting and a promising field for the treatment of heart failure as well as other diseases in the future. Of equal importance is developing vectors and delivery methods that can efficiently transduce the majority of the cardiomyocytes, that can offer a long term expression and that can escape the host immune response. Recombinant adeno-associated virus vectors have the potential to become a promising novel therapeutic vehicles for molecular medicine in the future. PMID:21092890

  2. Gene therapy in keratoconus

    PubMed Central

    Farjadnia, Mahgol; Naderan, Mohammad; Mohammadpour, Mehrdad

    2015-01-01

    Keratoconus (KC) is the most common ectasia of the cornea and is a common reason for corneal transplant. Therapeutic strategies that can arrest the progression of this disease and modify the underlying pathogenesis are getting more and more popularity among scientists. Cumulating data represent strong evidence of a genetic role in the pathogenesis of KC. Different loci have been identified, and certain mutations have also been mapped for this disease. Moreover, Biophysical properties of the cornea create an appropriate candidate of this tissue for gene therapy. Immune privilege, transparency and ex vivo stability are among these properties. Recent advantage in vectors, besides the ability to modulate the corneal milieu for accepting the target gene for a longer period and fruitful translation, make a big hope for stupendous results reasonable. PMID:25709266

  3. [Basic principles of gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Vieweg, J

    1996-09-01

    The rapid development of recombinant DNA technology and our enhanced understanding of the genetic basis of human disease has facilitated the development of new molecular therapeutic modalities, termed gene therapy. Gene therapy involves the transfer of functional genes into somatic cells and their expression in target tissues in order to replace absent genes, correct defective genes, or induce antitumoral activity in the tumor-bearing host. Currently, an increasing number of gene therapy strategies are being investigated in experimental and clinical trials. Despite substantial progress, a number of technical and logistical hurdles must still be overcome before gene therapy can be safety and effectively applied in the human patient. Since gene therapy involves complex cell processing and can be time consuming and costly, simplifications or even alternative approaches will be necessary in order to establish this therapy as suitable for clinical use. This report reviews various gene therapy strategies and gene delivery techniques currently under clinical or experimental investigation. Special emphasis is given to cytokine gene therapy using gene-modified tumor vaccines for cancer treatment.

  4. Human Gene Therapy: Genes without Frontiers?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simon, Eric J.

    2002-01-01

    Describes the latest advancements and setbacks in human gene therapy to provide reference material for biology teachers to use in their science classes. Focuses on basic concepts such as recombinant DNA technology, and provides examples of human gene therapy such as severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome, familial hypercholesterolemia, and…

  5. Human Gene Therapy: Genes without Frontiers?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Simon, Eric J.

    2002-01-01

    Describes the latest advancements and setbacks in human gene therapy to provide reference material for biology teachers to use in their science classes. Focuses on basic concepts such as recombinant DNA technology, and provides examples of human gene therapy such as severe combined immunodeficiency syndrome, familial hypercholesterolemia, and…

  6. [Gene therapy. Methods and applications].

    PubMed

    Jonassen, T O; Grinde, B; Orstavik, I

    1994-04-10

    Modern techniques in molecular biology and cell biology will probably make gene therapy, i.e. therapeutic transfer of genes to the patient's cells, available for treatment of many genetic diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and infectious diseases. For genetic diseases the treatment will involve the transfer of a functional copy of the defect gene. The strategy for treatment of cancer may include the transfer of genes that induce the death of cancer cells via toxic molecules, and genes that enhance the immune response to tumour cells. After several years of preclinical studies, the National Institutes of Health in the USA has, up to February 1994, approved 56 protocols for clinical trials in human gene therapy. Most of the protocols include use of viruses to aid gene delivery. This paper briefly reviews the scientific basis for gene therapy, and discusses some clinical applications of somatic gene therapy in humans.

  7. Gene therapy for psychiatric disorders.

    PubMed

    Gelfand, Yaroslav; Kaplitt, Michael G

    2013-01-01

    Gene therapy has become of increasing interest in clinical neurosurgery with the completion of numerous clinical trials for Parkinson disease, Alzheimer disease, and pediatric genetic disorders. With improved understanding of the dysfunctional circuitry mediating various psychiatric disorders, deep brain stimulation for refractory psychiatric diseases is being increasingly explored in human patients. These factors are likely to facilitate development of gene therapy for psychiatric diseases. Because delivery of gene therapy agents would require the same surgical techniques currently being employed for deep brain stimulation, neurosurgeons are likely to lead the development of this field, as has occurred in other areas of clinical gene therapy for neurologic disorders. We review the current state of gene therapy for psychiatric disorders and focus specifically on particular areas of promising research that may translate into human trials for depression, drug addiction, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and schizophrenia. Issues that are relatively unique to psychiatric gene therapy are also discussed.

  8. Gene therapy research in Asia.

    PubMed

    Deng, H-X; Wang, Y; Ding, Q-R; Li, D-L; Wei, Yu-Quan

    2017-09-07

    Gene therapy has shown great potential for the treatment of diseases that previously were either untreatable or treatable but not curable with conventional schemes. Recent progress in clinical gene therapy trials has emerged in various severe diseases, including primary immunodeficiencies, leukodystrophies, Leber's congenital amaurosis, haemophilia, as well as retinal dystrophy. The clinical transformation and industrialization of gene therapy in Asia have been remarkable and continue making steady progress. A total of six gene therapy-based products have been approved worldwide, including two drugs from Asia. This review aims to highlight recent progress in gene therapy clinical trials and discuss the prospects for the future in China and wider Asia.Gene Therapy advance online publication, 7 September 2017; doi:10.1038/gt.2017.62.

  9. Gene therapy for heart failure.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Barry

    2015-09-01

    Heart failure is a major public health problem throughout the world and it is likely that its prevalence will continue to grow over the next several decades. Despite advances in the treatment of heart failure, morbidity and mortality remain unacceptably high. Gene transfer therapy provides a novel strategy for targeting abnormalities in cardiac cells that adversely affect cardiac function. New vectors for gene delivery, mainly adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) that are preferentially taken up by cardiomyocytes, can result in sustained transgene expression. The cardiac isoform of sarco(endo)plasmic reticulum Ca(2+)ATPase (SERCA2a) plays a major role in regulating calcium levels in cardiomyocytes. Abnormal calcium handling by the failing heart caused by a reduction in SERCA2a activity adversely affects both systolic and diastolic function. The Calcium Upregulation by Percutaneous Administration of Gene Therapy in Cardiac Disease (CUPID) study was a Phase 2a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, dose-finding study that was performed in patients with advanced heart failure due to systolic dysfunction. Eligible patients received AAV/SERCA2a or placebo by direct antegrade infusion into the coronary circulation. At the end of 12 months, patients receiving high-dose therapy (i.e. 1×10(13) DNase Resistant Particles) had evidence of favorable changes in several clinically relevant domains compared to patients treated with placebo. There were no safety concerns at any dose of AAV/SERCA2a. Patients treated with AAV/SERCA2a exhibited a striking reduction in cardiovascular events that persisted through 36 months of follow-up compared to patients who received placebo. Transgene expression was detected in the myocardium of patients receiving AAV/SERCA2a gene therapy as long as 31 months after delivery. A second Phase 2b study, CUPID 2, designed to confirm this favorable effect on heart failure events, is currently underway with the results expected to be presented later in

  10. Gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Rogers, Geoffrey L; Herzog, Roland W

    2015-01-01

    Hemophilia is an X-linked inherited bleeding disorder consisting of two classifications, hemophilia A and hemophilia B, depending on the underlying mutation. Although the disease is currently treatable with intravenous delivery of replacement recombinant clotting factor, this approach represents a significant cost both monetarily and in terms of quality of life. Gene therapy is an attractive alternative approach to the treatment of hemophilia that would ideally provide life-long correction of clotting activity with a single injection. In this review, we will discuss the multitude of approaches that have been explored for the treatment of both hemophilia A and B, including both in vivo and ex vivo approaches with viral and nonviral delivery vectors.

  11. Gene therapy for hemophilia

    PubMed Central

    Rogers, Geoffrey L.; Herzog, Roland W.

    2015-01-01

    Hemophilia is an X-linked inherited bleeding disorder consisting of two classifications, hemophilia A and hemophilia B, depending on the underlying mutation. Although the disease is currently treatable with intravenous delivery of replacement recombinant clotting factor, this approach represents a significant cost both monetarily and in terms of quality of life. Gene therapy is an attractive alternative approach to the treatment of hemophilia that would ideally provide life-long correction of clotting activity with a single injection. In this review, we will discuss the multitude of approaches that have been explored for the treatment of both hemophilia A and B, including both in vivo and ex vivo approaches with viral and nonviral delivery vectors. PMID:25553466

  12. Gene therapy for deafness.

    PubMed

    Kohrman, D C; Raphael, Y

    2013-12-01

    Hearing loss is the most common sensory deficit in humans and can result from genetic, environmental or combined etiologies that prevent normal function of the cochlea, the peripheral sensory organ. Recent advances in understanding the genetic pathways that are critical for the development and maintenance of cochlear function, as well as the molecular mechanisms that underlie cell trauma and death, have provided exciting opportunities for modulating these pathways to correct genetic mutations, to enhance the endogenous protective pathways for hearing preservation and to regenerate lost sensory cells with the possibility of ameliorating hearing loss. A number of recent animal studies have used gene-based therapies in innovative ways toward realizing these goals. With further refinement, some of the protective and regenerative approaches reviewed here may become clinically applicable.

  13. Immunotherapy and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Elizabeth

    2004-02-01

    The Immunotherapy and Gene Therapy meeting of the Academy of Medical Sciences reviewed the state-of-the-art and translational prospects for therapeutic interventions aimed at killing tumor cells, correcting genetic defects and developing vaccines for chronic infections. Crucial basic science concepts and information about dendritic cells, the structure and function of T-cell receptors, and manipulation of the immune response by cytokine antagonists and peptides were presented. This information underpins vaccine design and delivery, as well as attempts to immunomodulate autoimmune disease. Results from studies using anticancer DNA vaccines, which include appropriate signals for both the innate and adaptive immune response, were presented in several talks. The vaccines incorporated helper epitopes and cancer target epitopes such as immunoglobulin idiotypes (for lymphomas and myelomas), melanoma-associated antigens (for melanoma and other solid tumors) and minor histocompatibility antigens (for leukemia). The results of using vaccines employing similar principles and designed to reduce viral load in HIV/AIDS patients were also presented. The introduction of suicide genes incorporating the bacterial enzyme nitroreductase gene (ntr) targeted at tumor cells prior to administration of the prodrug CB-1954, converted by ntr into a toxic alkylating agent, was discussed against the background of clinical trials and improved suicide gene design. The introduction into hematopoietic stem cells of missing genes for the common gamma-chain, deficiency of which causes severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), used similar retroviral transduction. The outcome of treating six SCID patients in the UK, and ten in France was successful immune reconstitution in the majority of patients, but in two of the French cases a complication of lymphoproliferative disease due to insertional mutagenesis was observed. The adoptive transfer of T-cells specific for minor histocompatibility antigens (for

  14. Gene Therapy and Children (For Parents)

    MedlinePlus

    ... Old Feeding Your 1- to 2-Year-Old Gene Therapy and Children KidsHealth > For Parents > Gene Therapy ... that don't respond to conventional therapies. About Genes Our genes help make us unique. Inherited from ...

  15. Gene therapy for malignant glioma.

    PubMed

    Okura, Hidehiro; Smith, Christian A; Rutka, James T

    2014-01-01

    Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) is the most frequent and devastating primary brain tumor in adults. Despite current treatment modalities, such as surgical resection followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy, only modest improvements in median survival have been achieved. Frequent recurrence and invasiveness of GBM are likely due to the resistance of glioma stem cells to conventional treatments; therefore, novel alternative treatment strategies are desperately needed. Recent advancements in molecular biology and gene technology have provided attractive novel treatment possibilities for patients with GBM. Gene therapy is defined as a technology that aims to modify the genetic complement of cells to obtain therapeutic benefit. To date, gene therapy for the treatment of GBM has demonstrated anti-tumor efficacy in pre-clinical studies and promising safety profiles in clinical studies. However, while this approach is obviously promising, concerns still exist regarding issues associated with transduction efficiency, viral delivery, the pathologic response of the brain, and treatment efficacy. Tumor development and progression involve alterations in a wide spectrum of genes, therefore a variety of gene therapy approaches for GBM have been proposed. Improved viral vectors are being evaluated, and the potential use of gene therapy alone or in synergy with other treatments against GBM are being studied. In this review, we will discuss the most commonly studied gene therapy approaches for the treatment of GBM in preclinical and clinical studies including: prodrug/suicide gene therapy; oncolytic gene therapy; cytokine mediated gene therapy; and tumor suppressor gene therapy. In addition, we review the principles and mechanisms of current gene therapy strategies as well as advantages and disadvantages of each.

  16. Targeting sodium/iodide symporter gene expression for estrogen-regulated imaging and therapy in breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Montiel-Equihua, C A; Martín-Duque, P; de la Vieja, A; Quintanilla, M; Burnet, J; Vassaux, G; Lemoine, N R

    2008-07-01

    Expression of the sodium iodide symporter (hNIS) has been detected in breast cancer tissue, but frequently, not at the levels necessary to mediate (131)I accumulation. Transducing the hNIS gene into breast cancer cells with adenovirus could be a tractable strategy to render breast cancer susceptible to radioiodide therapy. We constructed the replication-incompetent virus, AdSERE, in which an estrogen-responsive promoter directs the expression of hNIS. In vitro, we demonstrate that AdSERE mediates hNIS expression and iodide uptake in ER+ breast cancer cells. In vivo, we show that AdSERE-infected ER+ tumors can be imaged due to tracer accumulation; in addition, AdSERE in combination with therapeutic doses of (131)I suppresses tumor growth.

  17. The radiation dose-regulated AND gate genetic circuit, a novel targeted and real-time monitoring strategy for cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Ding, M; Zhang, E; He, R; Wang, X; Li, R; Wang, W; Yi, Q

    2012-06-01

    The AND gate functions such that when all inputs are activated the downstream gene will be transcribed and it is off otherwise. To accomplish optimal and targeted gene therapy in solid tumor patients, we have constructed an AND gate genetic circuit and investigated whether it could be activated by low-dose radiation in vitro and in vivo. The enhancement green fluorescent protein (EGFP) expression in different tumor cells transfected with control vector plxsn-EGFP confirmed that 2 Gy of radiation and 1% O(2) for 3 h could activate our AND gate. Besides, the obvious different levels of EGFP expression between 2 and 6 Gy of radiation demonstrated that the AND gate could be regulated by radiation doses. Additionally, through EGFP expression and the codistribution of p53 and HIF-1α in xenografts, we illustrated the targeted activation property of the AND gate and real-time monitoring to hypoxic districts in vivo. Moreover, significant growth inhibition and cell cycle arrest in vitro and apoptosis-inducing effects in vitro and in vivo proved that the AND gate induced ideal antitumor effects. In conclusion, the radiation dose-regulated AND gate genetic circuit could not only effectively monitor the therapeutic process in real-time but also induce ideal antitumor efficacy, and can be further exploited for personal therapy in clinical tumor patients.

  18. Gene therapy in metachromatic leukodystrophy.

    PubMed

    Sevin, C; Cartier-Lacave, N; Aubourg, P

    2009-01-01

    Metachromatic leukodystrophy (MLD) is a lysosomal storage disease caused by deficiency of the lysosomal enzyme arylsulfatase A. Deficiency of this enzyme results in intralysosomal storage of sphingolipid cerebroside 3-sulfates (sulfatides), which are abundant in myelin and neurons. A pathological hallmark of MLD is demyelination and neurodegeneration, causing various and ultimately lethal neurological symptoms. This review discusses the potential therapeutic application of hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy and intracerebral gene transfer (brain gene therapy) in patients with MLD.

  19. Clinical applications of retinal gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Lipinski, Daniel M; Thake, Miriam; MacLaren, Robert E

    2013-01-01

    Many currently incurable forms of blindness affecting the retina have a genetic etiology and several others, such as those resulting from retinal vascular disturbances, respond to repeated, potentially indefinite administration of molecular based treatments. The recent clinical advances in retinal gene therapy have shown that viral vectors can deliver genes safely to the retina and the promising initial results from a number of clinical trials suggest that certain diseases may potentially be treatable. Gene therapy provides a means of expressing proteins within directly transduced cells with far greater efficacy than might be achieved by traditional systemic pharmacological approaches. Recent developments have demonstrated how vector gene expression may be regulated and further improvements to vector design have limited side effects and improved safety profiles. These recent steps have been most significant in bringing gene therapy into the mainstream of ophthalmology. Nevertheless translating retinal gene therapy from animal research into clinical trials is still a lengthy process, including complexities in human retinal diseases that have been difficult to model in the laboratory. The focus of this review is to summarize the genetic background of the most common retinal diseases, highlight current concepts of gene delivery technology, and relate those technologies to pre-clinical and clinical gene therapy studies.

  20. Gas1 is a pleiotropic regulator of cellular functions: from embryonic development to molecular actions in cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Segovia, José; Zarco, Natanael

    2014-01-01

    Cellular homeostasis is governed by a precise regulation of the molecular mechanisms of action of several proteins in a given time. There is a group of proteins that have a particular role depending on the cellular context in which they are present and are known as pleiotropic proteins. The Gas1 (Growth Arrest Specific 1) gene was isolated from a subtraction library from serum arrested versus growing NIH3T3 mouse fibroblast. Gas1 is a member of the alpha receptors (GFRα) for the family of GDNF ligands (GFL), we have previously shown that Gas1 acts as a negative modulator of the GDNF-induced intracellular signaling and induces cell arrest and apoptosis. This modulating activity is the cause of the capacity of Gas1 to act as a tumor suppressor. On the other hand, several studies have shown the interaction between Gas1 and Hh (Hedgehog) proteins to potentiate the positive regulation of this pathway, which is involved in the development of the nervous system, and in both the origin and progression of different tumors. This review summarizes our current understanding of the structure of Gas1 and the molecular mechanism of action in different cellular functions, both during embryonic development, in the adult and its effects inhibiting cell growth and inducing apoptosis of cancer cells.

  1. Disease-Regulated Gene Therapy with Anti-Inflammatory Interleukin-10 Under the Control of the CXCL10 Promoter for the Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis.

    PubMed

    Broeren, Mathijs G A; de Vries, Marieke; Bennink, Miranda B; Arntz, Onno J; Blom, Arjen B; Koenders, Marije I; van Lent, Peter L E M; van der Kraan, Peter M; van den Berg, Wim B; van de Loo, Fons A J

    2016-03-01

    Disease-inducible promoters for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) have the potential to provide regulated expression of therapeutic proteins in arthritic joints. In this study, we set out to identify promoters of human genes that are upregulated during RA and are suitable to drive the expression of relevant amounts of anti-inflammatory interleukin (IL)-10. Microarray analysis of RA synovial biopsies compared with healthy controls yielded a list of 22 genes upregulated during RA. Of these genes, CXCL10 showed the highest induction in lipopolysaccharide-stimulated synovial cells. The CXCL10 promoter was obtained from human cDNA and cloned into a lentiviral vector carrying firefly luciferase to determine the promoter inducibility in primary synovial cells and in THP-1 cells. The promoter activation was strongest 8-12 hr after stimulation with the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α and was reinducible after 96 hr. In addition, the CXCL10 promoter showed a significant response to RA patient serum, compared with sera from healthy individuals. The luciferase gene was replaced with IL-10 to determine the therapeutic properties of the CXCL10p-IL10 lentiviral vector. Primary synovial cells transduced with CXCL10p-IL10 showed a great increase in IL-10 production after stimulation, which reduced the release of proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α and IL-1β. We conclude that the selected proximal promoter of the CXCL10 gene responds to inflammatory mediators present in the serum of patients with RA and that transduction with the lentiviral CXCL10p-IL10 vector reduces inflammatory cytokine production by primary synovial cells from patients with RA. CXCL10 promoter-regulated IL-10 overexpression can thus provide disease-inducible local gene therapy suitable for RA.

  2. Gene therapy: progress and predictions.

    PubMed

    Collins, Mary; Thrasher, Adrian

    2015-12-22

    The first clinical gene delivery, which involved insertion of a marker gene into lymphocytes from cancer patients, was published 25 years ago. In this review, we describe progress since then in gene therapy. Patients with some inherited single-gene defects can now be treated with their own bone marrow stem cells that have been engineered with a viral vector carrying the missing gene. Patients with inherited retinopathies and haemophilia B can also be treated by local or systemic injection of viral vectors. There are also a number of promising gene therapy approaches for cancer and infectious disease. We predict that the next 25 years will see improvements in safety, efficacy and manufacture of gene delivery vectors and introduction of gene-editing technologies to the clinic. Gene delivery may also prove a cost-effective method for the delivery of biological medicines. © 2015 The Authors.

  3. Nanoparticles for Retinal Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Conley, Shannon M.; Naash, Muna I.

    2010-01-01

    Ocular gene therapy is becoming a well-established field. Viral gene therapies for the treatment of Leber’s congentinal amaurosis (LCA) are in clinical trials, and many other gene therapy approaches are being rapidly developed for application to diverse ophthalmic pathologies. Of late, development of non-viral gene therapies has been an area of intense focus and one technology, polymer-compacted DNA nanoparticles, is especially promising. However, development of pharmaceutically and clinically viable therapeutics depends not only on having an effective and safe vector but also on a practical treatment strategy. Inherited retinal pathologies are caused by mutations in over 220 genes, some of which contain over 200 individual disease-causing mutations, which are individually very rare. This review will focus on both the progress and future of nanoparticles and also on what will be required to make them relevant ocular pharmaceutics. PMID:20452457

  4. Cell Therapy Regulation in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yuan-Chuan; Cheng, Hwei-Fang; Yeh, Ming-Kung

    2017-03-13

    Cell therapy is not only a novel medical practice but also a medicinal product [cell therapy product (CTP)]. More and more CTPs are being approved for marketing globally because of the rapid development of biomedicine in cell culture, preservation, and preparation. However, regulation is the most important criterion for the development of CTPs. Regulations must be flexible to expedite the process of marketing for new CTPs. Recently, the Taiwan Food and Drug Administration (TFDA) updated the related regulations such as regulation of development, current regulatory framework and process, and the application and evaluation processes. When the quality of CTPs has been improved significantly, their safety and efficacy are further ensured. The treatment protocol, a new design for adaptive licensing to current clinical practice, is a rapid process for patients with life-threatening diseases or serious conditions for which there are no suitable drugs, medical devices, or other therapeutic methods available. The hospital can submit the treatment protocol to apply for cell therapy as a medical practice, which may result in easier and faster cell therapy development, and personalized treatment for individual patients will evolve quickly.

  5. Gene Therapy for Infectious Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bunnell, Bruce A.; Morgan, Richard A.

    1998-01-01

    Gene therapy is being investigated as an alternative treatment for a wide range of infectious diseases that are not amenable to standard clinical management. Approaches to gene therapy for infectious diseases can be divided into three broad categories: (i) gene therapies based on nucleic acid moieties, including antisense DNA or RNA, RNA decoys, and catalytic RNA moieties (ribozymes); (ii) protein approaches such as transdominant negative proteins and single-chain antibodies; and (iii) immunotherapeutic approaches involving genetic vaccines or pathogen-specific lymphocytes. It is further possible that combinations of the aforementioned approaches will be used simultaneously to inhibit multiple stages of the life cycle of the infectious agent. PMID:9457428

  6. Gene therapy: proceed with caution.

    PubMed

    Grobstein, C; Flower, M

    1984-04-01

    On 6 February 1984 the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee of the National Institutes of Health approved a recommendation that the committee provide prior review of research protocols involving human gene therapy. Grobstein and Flower trace the development of public policy in response to concerns about the dangers of gene therapy, especially as it applies to germ line alteration. They offer guidelines and propose principles for an oversight body to confront the immediate and long term technical, social, and ethical implications of human genetic modification. An accompanying article presents a plea for the development of gene therapy by the mother of three children who have sickle cell anemia.

  7. The promise of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Pergament, Eugene

    2016-04-01

    The promise of gene therapy performed in the preimplantation and prenatal periods of pregnancy is rapidly becoming a reality. New technologies capable of making designed changes in single nucleotides make germline gene therapy possible. The article reviews the ethical and technical challenges of germline gene therapy. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats and related technologies are capable of deleting and inserting specific DNA sequences in mutated genes so as to correct the targeted DNA. The ability to target specific gene mutations will offer unique opportunities to at risk families, particularly those whose genotypes prevent any chance of a normal pregnancy outcome. Other applications of gene-modifying technologies on gametes, zygotes, and embryos are likely in the near future. There will be renewed debates on the potentially controversial applications of these technologies because of their capability to genetically alter the human germline and thereby future generations.

  8. Gene therapy for human genetic disease?

    PubMed

    Friedmann, T; Roblin, R

    1972-03-03

    In our view, gene therapy may ameliorate some human genetic diseases in the future. For this reason, we believe that research directed at the development of techniques for gene therapy should continue. For the foreseeable future, however, we oppose any further attempts at gene therapy in human patients because (i) our understanding of such basic processes as gene regulation and genetic recombination in human cells is inadequate; (ii) our understanding of the details of the relation between the molecular defect and the disease state is rudimentary for essentially all genetic diseases; and (iii) we have no information on the short-range and long-term side effects of gene therapy. We therefore propose that a sustained effort be made to formulate a complete set of ethicoscientific criteria to guide the development and clinical application of gene therapy techniques. Such an endeavor could go a long way toward ensuring that gene therapy is used in humans only in those instances where it will prove beneficial, and toward preventing its misuse through premature application. Two recent papers have provided new demonstrations of directed genetic modification of mammalian cells. Munyon et al. (44) restored the ability to synthesize the enzyme thymidine kinase to thymidine kinase-deficient mouse cells by infection with ultraviolet-irradiated herpes simplex virus. In their experiments the DNA from herpes simplex virus, which contains a gene coding for thymidine kinase, may have formed a hereditable association with the mouse cells. Merril et al. (45) reported that treatment of fibroblasts from patients with galactosemia with exogenous DNA caused increased activity of a missing enzyme, alpha-D-galactose-l-phosphate uridyltransferase. They also provided some evidence that the change persisted after subculturing the treated cells. If this latter report can be confirmed, the feasibility of directed genetic modification of human cells would be clearly demonstrated, considerably

  9. Gene Therapy in Heart Failure.

    PubMed

    Fargnoli, Anthony S; Katz, Michael G; Bridges, Charles R; Hajjar, Roger J

    2016-10-28

    Heart failure is a significant burden to the global healthcare system and represents an underserved market for new pharmacologic strategies, especially therapies which can address root cause myocyte dysfunction. Modern drugs, surgeries, and state-of-the-art interventions are costly and do not improve survival outcome measures. Gene therapy is an attractive strategy, whereby selected gene targets and their associated regulatory mechanisms can be permanently managed therapeutically in a single treatment. This in theory could be sustainable for the patient's life. Despite the promise, however, gene therapy has numerous challenges that must be addressed together as a treatment plan comprising these key elements: myocyte physiologic target validation, gene target manipulation strategy, vector selection for the correct level of manipulation, and carefully utilizing an efficient delivery route that can be implemented in the clinic to efficiently transfer the therapy within safety limits. This chapter summarizes the key developments in cardiac gene therapy from the perspective of understanding each of these components of the treatment plan. The latest pharmacologic gene targets, gene therapy vectors, delivery routes, and strategies are reviewed.

  10. STAT3/NF-κB-Regulated Lentiviral TK/GCV Suicide Gene Therapy for Cisplatin-Resistant Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Kuo, Wei-Ying; Hwu, Luen; Wu, Chun-Yi; Lee, Jhih-Shian; Chang, Chi-Wei; Liu, Ren-Shyan

    2017-01-01

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) represents approximately 20% of all breast cancers and appears resistance to conventional cytotoxic chemotherapy, demonstrating a particularly poor prognosis and a significantly worse clinical outcome than other types of cancer. Suicide gene therapy has been used for the in vivo treatment of various solid tumors in recent clinical trials. In tumor microenvironment, STAT3/NF-κB pathways are constitutively activated in stromal cells as well as in cancer stem cells (CSCs). In this study, we have cloned a novel STAT3/NF-κB-based reporter system to drive the expression of herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (HSV-TK) against breast cancer. Lentiviral vector expressing HSV-TK under the regulation of STAT3/NF-κB fused response element was developed. In this setting, we exploited the constitutive STAT3/NF-κB activation in tumors to achieve higher transgene expression than that driven by a constitutively active CMV promotor in vivo. An orthotropic MDA-MB-231 triple negative breast cancer mouse model was used for evaluating the feasibility of STAT3-NF-κB-TK/GCV suicide gene therapy system. The basal promoter activity of Lenti-CMV-TK and Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK in MDA-MB-231 cells was compared by 3H-FEAU uptake assay. The Lenti-CMV-TK showed ~5 fold higher 3H-FEAU uptake then Lenti -STAT3-NF-κB-TK. In clonogenic assay, cells expressing Lenti-CMV-TK were 2-fold more sensitive to GCV than Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK transduced cells. In vitro effect of STAT3-NF-κB-induced transgene expression was determined by 10ng/mL TNF-α induction and confirmed by western blot analysis and DsRedm fluorescent microscopy. In vivo evaluation of therapeutic effect by bioluminescence and [18F]FHBG microPET imaging indicated that Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK showed more tumor growth retardation than Lenti-CMV-TK when GCV (20 mg/kg) was administered. The invasiveness and expression of cancer stem cell markers were both decreased after STAT3/NF-κB-regulated HSV

  11. STAT3/NF-κB-Regulated Lentiviral TK/GCV Suicide Gene Therapy for Cisplatin-Resistant Triple-Negative Breast Cancer.

    PubMed

    Kuo, Wei-Ying; Hwu, Luen; Wu, Chun-Yi; Lee, Jhih-Shian; Chang, Chi-Wei; Liu, Ren-Shyan

    2017-01-01

    Triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) represents approximately 20% of all breast cancers and appears resistance to conventional cytotoxic chemotherapy, demonstrating a particularly poor prognosis and a significantly worse clinical outcome than other types of cancer. Suicide gene therapy has been used for the in vivo treatment of various solid tumors in recent clinical trials. In tumor microenvironment, STAT3/NF-κB pathways are constitutively activated in stromal cells as well as in cancer stem cells (CSCs). In this study, we have cloned a novel STAT3/NF-κB-based reporter system to drive the expression of herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (HSV-TK) against breast cancer. Lentiviral vector expressing HSV-TK under the regulation of STAT3/NF-κB fused response element was developed. In this setting, we exploited the constitutive STAT3/NF-κB activation in tumors to achieve higher transgene expression than that driven by a constitutively active CMV promotor in vivo. An orthotropic MDA-MB-231 triple negative breast cancer mouse model was used for evaluating the feasibility of STAT3-NF-κB-TK/GCV suicide gene therapy system. The basal promoter activity of Lenti-CMV-TK and Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK in MDA-MB-231 cells was compared by (3)H-FEAU uptake assay. The Lenti-CMV-TK showed ~5 fold higher (3)H-FEAU uptake then Lenti -STAT3-NF-κB-TK. In clonogenic assay, cells expressing Lenti-CMV-TK were 2-fold more sensitive to GCV than Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK transduced cells. In vitro effect of STAT3-NF-κB-induced transgene expression was determined by 10ng/mL TNF-α induction and confirmed by western blot analysis and DsRedm fluorescent microscopy. In vivo evaluation of therapeutic effect by bioluminescence and [(18)F]FHBG microPET imaging indicated that Lenti-STAT3-NF-κB-TK showed more tumor growth retardation than Lenti-CMV-TK when GCV (20 mg/kg) was administered. The invasiveness and expression of cancer stem cell markers were both decreased after STAT3/NF-κB-regulated HSV

  12. Gene therapy on the move

    PubMed Central

    Kaufmann, Kerstin B; Büning, Hildegard; Galy, Anne; Schambach, Axel; Grez, Manuel

    2013-01-01

    The first gene therapy clinical trials were initiated more than two decades ago. In the early days, gene therapy shared the fate of many experimental medicine approaches and was impeded by the occurrence of severe side effects in a few treated patients. The understanding of the molecular and cellular mechanisms leading to treatment- and/or vector-associated setbacks has resulted in the development of highly sophisticated gene transfer tools with improved safety and therapeutic efficacy. Employing these advanced tools, a series of Phase I/II trials were started in the past few years with excellent clinical results and no side effects reported so far. Moreover, highly efficient gene targeting strategies and site-directed gene editing technologies have been developed and applied clinically. With more than 1900 clinical trials to date, gene therapy has moved from a vision to clinical reality. This review focuses on the application of gene therapy for the correction of inherited diseases, the limitations and drawbacks encountered in some of the early clinical trials and the revival of gene therapy as a powerful treatment option for the correction of monogenic disorders. PMID:24106209

  13. Gene Therapy for Childhood Neurofibromatosis

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-05-01

    AD_________________ Award Number: W81XWH-13-1-0101 TITLE: Gene Therapy for Childhood ...May 2014 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Gene Therapy for Childhood Neurofibromatosis 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-13-1-0101 5c...technology. This approach still represents a plausible and very different way to treat childhood neurofibromatosis, as well as other solid tumors

  14. Gene Therapy for Pituitary Tumors

    PubMed Central

    Seilicovich, Adriana; Pisera, Daniel; Sciascia, Sandra A.; Candolfi, Marianela; Puntel, Mariana; Xiong, Weidong; Jaita, Gabriela; Castro, Maria G.

    2009-01-01

    Pituitary tumors are the most common primary intracranial neoplasms. Although most pituitary tumors are considered typically benign, others can cause severe and progressive disease. The principal aims of pituitary tumor treatment are the elimination or reduction of the tumor mass, normalization of hormone secretion and preservation of remaining pituitary function. In spite of major advances in the therapy of pituitary tumors, for some of the most difficult tumors, current therapies that include medical, surgical and radiotherapeutic methods are often unsatisfactory and there is a need to develop new treatment strategies. Gene therapy, which uses nucleic acids as drugs, has emerged as an attractive therapeutic option for the treatment of pituitary tumors that do not respond to classical treatment strategies if the patients become intolerant to the therapy. The development of animal models for pituitary tumors and hormone hypersecretion has proven to be critical for the implementation of novel treatment strategies and gene therapy approaches. Preclinical trials using several gene therapy approaches for the treatment of anterior pituitary diseases have been successfully implemented. Several issues need to be addressed before clinical implementation becomes a reality, including the development of more effective and safer viral vectors, uncovering novel therapeutic targets and development of targeted expression of therapeutic transgenes. With the development of efficient gene delivery vectors allowing long-term transgene expression with minimal toxicity, gene therapy will become one of the most promising approaches for treating pituitary adenomas. PMID:16457646

  15. Vectors for cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhang, J; Russell, S J

    1996-09-01

    Many viral and non-viral vector systems have now been developed for gene therapy applications. In this article, the pros and cons of these vector systems are discussed in relation to the different cancer gene therapy strategies. The protocols used in cancer gene therapy can be broadly divided into six categories including gene transfer to explanted cells for use as cell-based cancer vaccines; gene transfer to a small number of tumour cells in situ to achieve a vaccine effect; gene transfer to vascular endothelial cells (VECs) lining the blood vessels of the tumour to interfere with tumour angiogenesis; gene transfer to T lymphocytes to enhance their antitumour effector capability; gene transfer to haemopoietic stem cells (HSCs) to enhance their resistance to cytotoxic drugs and gene transfer to a large number of tumour cells in situ to achieve nonimmune tumour reduction with or without bystander effect. Each of the six strategies makes unique demands on the vector system and these are discussed with reference to currently available vectors. Aspects of vector biology that are in need of further development are discussed in some detail. The final section points to the potential use of replicating viruses as delivery vehicles for efficient in vivo gene transfer to disseminated cancers.

  16. Gene Therapy for Metabolic Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chandler, Randy J.; Venditti, Charles P.

    2016-01-01

    SUMMARY Gene therapy has recently shown great promise as an effective treatment for a number of metabolic diseases caused by genetic defects in both animal models and human clinical trials. Most of the current success has been achieved using a viral mediated gene addition approach, but gene-editing technology has progressed rapidly and gene modification is being actively pursued in clinical trials. This review focuses on viral mediated gene addition approaches, because most of the current clinical trials utilize this approach to treat metabolic diseases. PMID:27853673

  17. Gene Therapy in Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Vinge, Leif Erik; Raake, Philip W.; Koch, Walter J.

    2008-01-01

    With increasing knowledge of basic molecular mechanisms governing the development of heart failure (HF), the possibility of specifically targeting key pathological players is evolving. Technology allowing for efficient in vivo transduction of myocardial tissue with long-term expression of a transgene enables translation of basic mechanistic knowledge into potential gene therapy approaches. Gene therapy in HF is in its infancy clinically with the predominant amount of experience being from animal models. Nevertheless, this challenging and promising field is gaining momentum as recent preclinical studies in larger animals have been carried out and, importantly, there are 2 newly initiated phase I clinical trials for HF gene therapy. To put it simply, 2 parameters are needed for achieving success with HF gene therapy: (1) clearly identified detrimental/beneficial molecular targets; and (2) the means to manipulate these targets at a molecular level in a sufficient number of cardiac cells. However, several obstacles do exist on our way to efficient and safe gene transfer to human myocardium. Some of these obstacles are discussed in this review; however, it primarily focuses on the molecular target systems that have been subjected to intense investigation over the last decade in an attempt to make gene therapy for human HF a reality. PMID:18566312

  18. Alcohol Regulates Genes that Are Associated with Response to Endocrine Therapy and Attenuates the Actions of Tamoxifen in Breast Cancer Cells.

    PubMed

    Candelaria, Nicholes R; Weldon, Ryan; Muthusamy, Selvaraj; Nguyen-Vu, Trang; Addanki, Sridevi; Yoffou, Paule-Helena; Karaboga, Husna; Blessing, Alicia M; Bollu, Lakshmi Reddy; Miranda, Rajesh C; Lin, Chin-Yo

    2015-01-01

    Hereditary, hormonal, and behavioral factors contribute to the development of breast cancer. Alcohol consumption is a modifiable behavior that is linked to increased breast cancer risks and is associated with the development of hormone-dependent breast cancers as well as disease progression and recurrence following endocrine treatment. In this study we examined the molecular mechanisms of action of alcohol by applying molecular, genetic, and genomic approaches in characterizing its effects on estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer cells. Treatments with alcohol promoted cell proliferation, increased growth factor signaling, and up-regulated the transcription of the ER target gene GREB1 but not the canonical target TFF1/pS2. Microarray analysis following alcohol treatment identified a large number of alcohol-responsive genes, including those which function in apoptotic and cell proliferation pathways. Furthermore, expression profiles of the responsive gene sets in tumors were strongly associated with clinical outcomes in patients who received endocrine therapy. Correspondingly, alcohol treatment attenuated the anti-proliferative effects of the endocrine therapeutic drug tamoxifen in ER-positive breast cancer cells. To determine the contribution and functions of responsive genes, their differential expression in tumors were assessed between outcome groups. The proto-oncogene BRAF was identified as a novel alcohol- and estrogen-induced gene that showed higher expression in patients with poor outcomes. Knock-down of BRAF, moreover, prevented the proliferation of breast cancer cells. These findings not only highlight the mechanistic basis of the effects of alcohol on breast cancer cells and increased risks for disease incidents and recurrence, but may facilitate the discovery and characterization of novel oncogenic pathways and markers in breast cancer research and therapeutics.

  19. Alcohol Regulates Genes that Are Associated with Response to Endocrine Therapy and Attenuates the Actions of Tamoxifen in Breast Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Candelaria, Nicholes R.; Weldon, Ryan; Muthusamy, Selvaraj; Nguyen-Vu, Trang; Addanki, Sridevi; Yoffou, Paule-Helena; Karaboga, Husna; Blessing, Alicia M.; Bollu, Lakshmi Reddy; Miranda, Rajesh C.; Lin, Chin-Yo

    2015-01-01

    Hereditary, hormonal, and behavioral factors contribute to the development of breast cancer. Alcohol consumption is a modifiable behavior that is linked to increased breast cancer risks and is associated with the development of hormone-dependent breast cancers as well as disease progression and recurrence following endocrine treatment. In this study we examined the molecular mechanisms of action of alcohol by applying molecular, genetic, and genomic approaches in characterizing its effects on estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer cells. Treatments with alcohol promoted cell proliferation, increased growth factor signaling, and up-regulated the transcription of the ER target gene GREB1 but not the canonical target TFF1/pS2. Microarray analysis following alcohol treatment identified a large number of alcohol-responsive genes, including those which function in apoptotic and cell proliferation pathways. Furthermore, expression profiles of the responsive gene sets in tumors were strongly associated with clinical outcomes in patients who received endocrine therapy. Correspondingly, alcohol treatment attenuated the anti-proliferative effects of the endocrine therapeutic drug tamoxifen in ER-positive breast cancer cells. To determine the contribution and functions of responsive genes, their differential expression in tumors were assessed between outcome groups. The proto-oncogene BRAF was identified as a novel alcohol- and estrogen-induced gene that showed higher expression in patients with poor outcomes. Knock-down of BRAF, moreover, prevented the proliferation of breast cancer cells. These findings not only highlight the mechanistic basis of the effects of alcohol on breast cancer cells and increased risks for disease incidents and recurrence, but may facilitate the discovery and characterization of novel oncogenic pathways and markers in breast cancer research and therapeutics. PMID:26661278

  20. Gene therapy in the cornea.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Rajiv R; Sharma, Ajay; Netto, Marcelo V; Sinha, Sunilima; Wilson, Steven E

    2005-09-01

    Technological advances in the field of gene therapy has prompted more than three hundred phase I and phase II gene-based clinical trials for the treatment of cancer, AIDS, macular degeneration, cardiovascular, and other monogenic diseases. Besides treating diseases, gene transfer technology has been utilized for the development of preventive and therapeutic vaccines for malaria, tuberculosis, hepatitis A, B and C viruses, AIDS, and influenza. The potential therapeutic applications of gene transfer technology are enormous. The cornea is an excellent candidate for gene therapy because of its accessibility and immune-privileged nature. In the last two decades, various viral vectors, such as adeno, adeno-associated, retro, lenti, and herpes simplex, as well as non-viral methods, were examined for introducing DNA into corneal cells in vitro, in vivo and ex vivo. Most of these studies used fluorescent or non-fluorescent marker genes to track the level and duration of transgene expression in corneal cells. However, limited studies were directed to evaluate prospects of gene-based interventions for corneal diseases or disorders such as allograft rejection, laser-induced post-operative haze, herpes simplex keratitis, and wound healing in animal models. We will review the successes and obstacles impeding gene therapy approaches used for delivering genes into the cornea.

  1. Gene therapies development: slow progress and promising prospect

    PubMed Central

    Hanna, Eve; Rémuzat, Cécile; Auquier, Pascal; Toumi, Mondher

    2017-01-01

    ABSTRACT Background: In 1989, the concept of human gene therapies has emerged with the first approved human gene therapy trial of Rosenberg et al. Gene therapies are considered as promising therapies applicable to a broad range of diseases. Objective: The objective of this study was to review the descriptive data on gene therapy clinical trials conducted worldwide between 1989 and 2015, and to discuss potential success rates of these trials over time and anticipated market launch in the upcoming years. Methods: A publicly available database, ‘Gene Therapy Clinical Trials Worldwide’, was used to extract descriptive data on gene therapy clinical trials: (1) number of trials per year between 1989 and 2015; (2) countries; (3) diseases targeted by gene therapies; (4) vectors used for gene delivery; (5) trials status; (6) phases of development. Results: Between 1989 and 2015, 2,335 gene therapy clinical trials have been completed, were ongoing or approved (but not started) worldwide. The number of clinical trials did not increase steadily over time; it reached its highest peak in 2015 (163 trials). Almost 95% of the trials were in early phases of development and 72% were ongoing. The United States undertook 67% of gene therapy clinical trials. The majority of gene therapies clinical trials identified targeted cancer diseases. Conclusion: The first gene therapy was approved in the European Union in 2012, after two decades of dashed expectations. This approval boosted the investment in developing gene therapies. Regulators are creating a specific path for rapid access of those new therapies, providing hope for manufacturers, healthcare professionals, and patients. However, payers are increasingly scrutinizing the additional benefits of the new therapies. Major steps forward are expected in the field of gene therapies in the future. PMID:28265348

  2. Delivery systems for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Mali, Shrikant

    2013-01-01

    The structure of DNA was unraveled by Watson and Crick in 1953, and two decades later Arber, Nathans and Smith discovered DNA restriction enzymes, which led to the rapid growth in the field of recombinant DNA technology. From expressing cloned genes in bacteria to expressing foreign DNA in transgenic animals, DNA is now slated to be used as a therapeutic agent to replace defective genes in patients suffering from genetic disorders or to kill tumor cells in cancer patients. Gene therapy provides modern medicine with new perspectives that were unthinkable two decades ago. Progress in molecular biology and especially, molecular medicine is now changing the basics of clinical medicine. A variety of viral and non-viral possibilities are available for basic and clinical research. This review summarizes the delivery routes and methods for gene transfer used in gene therapy.

  3. Early and late effects of cardiac resynchronization therapy on force-frequency relation and contractility regulating gene expression in heart failure patients.

    PubMed

    Mullens, Wilfried; Bartunek, Jozef; Tang, W H Wilson; Delrue, Leen; Herbots, Lieven; Willems, Rik; De Bruyne, Bernard; Goethals, Marc; Verstreken, Sofie; Vanderheyden, Marc

    2008-01-01

    Heart failure is associated with a reduction in left ventricular (LV) contractility as evidenced by a blunted force-frequency response (FFR) and downregulation of contractility regulating genes. This study sought to investigate whether cardiac resynchronization therapy (CRT) is capable of reversing the blunted FFR and the downregulation of contractility regulating genes. Twenty heart failure patients underwent echocardiographic examination during incremental AAI and DDD-CRT pacing at 70, 90, and 110 beats/min, immediately after and 4 months after CRT implantation. The FFR was determined from the ratio of the LV systolic pressure/end systolic volume index at given heart rate. In a subgroup of 6 patients with idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy, serial LV dP/dtmax was invasively measured during both pacing modes and serial LV endomyocardial biopsies were taken to measure sarcoplasmatic reticulum calcium ATPase 2alpha (SERCA2alpha), phospholamban (PLN), sarcolemmal sodium calcium exchanger (NCX), beta1-adrenoreceptor (beta1-AR), and apelin (APL) gene expression using reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction. Acutely, DDD-CRT pacing was associated with a decrease in dyssynchrony (P <.01) and increase in diastolic filling time (P <.01) at all heart rates paralleled by an upward shift of the FFR (P <.01) without force-frequency amplification. A greater upward shift of the FFR was noticed during DDD-CRT as compared with AAI (P <.01) after 4 months. In addition, CRT was associated with a significant force-frequency amplification at follow-up as evidenced from the steeper slope of the FFR relationship (P = .039). This was associated with a significant upregulation of SERCA2alpha P = .01), PLN (P = .01), their ratio (P = .01), ratio of SERCA/NCX (P = .02), beta1-AR (P = .03), and APL (P = .01) mRNA levels. CRT is associated with an acute upward shift in the FFR without force-frequency amplification related to restored synchronicity and increased filling time of the LV

  4. [Genetic basis of head and neck cancers and gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Özel, Halil Erdem; Özkırış, Mahmut; Gencer, Zeliha Kapusuz; Saydam, Levent

    2013-01-01

    Surgery and combinations of traditional treatments are not successful enough particularly for advanced stage head and neck cancer. The major disadvantages of chemotherapy and radiation therapy are the lack of specificity for the target tissue and toxicity to the patient. As a result, gene therapy may offer a more specific approach. The aim of gene therapy is to present therapeutic genes into cancer cells which selectively eliminate malignant cells with no systemic toxicity to the patient. This article reviews the genetic basis of head and neck cancers and important concepts in cancer gene therapy: (i) inhibition of oncogenes; (ii) tumor suppressor gene replacement; (iii) regulation of immune response against malignant cells; (iv) genetic prodrug activation; and (v) antiangiogenic gene therapy. Currently, gene therapy is not sufficient to replace the traditional treatments of head and neck cancers, however there is no doubt that it will have an important role in the near future.

  5. Human germline gene therapy reconsidered.

    PubMed

    Resnik, D B; Langer, P J

    2001-07-20

    This paper reevaluates the notion of human germline gene therapy (HGLGT) in light of developments in biomedicine, biotechnology, and ethical and policy analysis. The essay makes the following key points. First, because the distinction among "therapy," "prevention," and "enhancement" is not clear in human genetics, "gene therapy" is an inadequate descriptor of the process and goals of germline genetic alterations. The alternate use of the phrase "human germline genome modification" (HGLGM) could avoid a misleading label. Second, procedures that could be construed as genetic "enhancement" may not be as morally problematic as some have supposed, once one understands that the boundaries between therapy, prevention, and enhancement are not obvious in genetic medicine. Third, HGLGM might be the medically and morally most appropriate way of avoiding the birth of a child with a genetic disease in only a small range of cases. Fourth, there are still many ethical and scientific problems relating to the safety and efficacy of HGLGM.

  6. [Gene therapy and hospital strategy].

    PubMed

    Leclercq, B

    1993-10-01

    Gene therapy raises strong interrogations among hospital managers. Actually, hospital environment is disturbed and moving as well in a legislative political and statutory level as in an economical (competition, consumerism, proximity of the establishments) and demographic one (ageing, new pathologies). The fast development of medical technologies amplifies this disturbance. In front of that environment, the hospital has to anticipate the arriving of gene therapy without underestimating the deontological, medical, economical and judicial risks. The decisions of implantation have to be taken in a collective way, and seriously planned and estimated on a medical and economical level. The way to train people and to forecast their careers don't have to be underestimated in consideration of the challenge which is represented by the gene therapy.

  7. Gene Therapy in Corneal Transplantation

    PubMed Central

    Qazi, Yureeda; Hamrah, Pedram

    2014-01-01

    Corneal transplantation is the most commonly performed organ transplantation. Immune privilege of the cornea is widely recognized, partly because of the relatively favorable outcome of corneal grafts. The first-time recipient of corneal allografts in an avascular, low-risk setting can expect a 90% success rate without systemic immunosuppressive agents and histocompatibility matching. However, immunologic rejection remains the major cause of graft failure, particularly in patients with a high risk for rejection. Corticosteroids remain the first-line therapy for the prevention and treatment of immune rejection. However, current pharmacological measures are limited in their side-effect profiles, repeated application, lack of targeted response, and short duration of action. Experimental ocular gene therapy may thus present new horizons in immunomodulation. From efficient viral vectors to sustainable alternative splicing, we discuss the progress of gene therapy in promoting graft survival and postulate further avenues for gene-mediated prevention of allogeneic graft rejection. PMID:24138037

  8. The companions: regulatory T cells and gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Eghtesad, Saman; Morel, Penelope A; Clemens, Paula R

    2009-01-01

    Undesired immunological responses to products of therapeutic gene replacement have been obstacles to successful gene therapy. Understanding such responses of the host immune system to achieve immunological tolerance to a transferred gene product is therefore crucial. In this article, we review relevant studies of immunological responses to gene replacement therapy, the role of immunological tolerance mediated by regulatory T cells in down-regulating the unwanted immune responses, and the interrelationship of the two topics. PMID:19368560

  9. Gene therapy for Down syndrome.

    PubMed

    Fillat, Cristina; Altafaj, Xavier

    2012-01-01

    The presence of an additional copy of HSA21 chromosome in Down syndrome (DS) individuals leads to the overexpression of 30-50% of HSA21 genes. This upregulation can, in turn, trigger a deregulation on the expression of non-HSA21 genes. Moreover, the overdose of HSA21 microRNAs (miRNAs) may result in the downregulation of its target genes. Additional complexity can also arise from epigenetic changes modulating gene expression. Thus, a myriad of transcriptional and posttranscriptional alterations participate to produce abnormal phenotypes in almost all tissues and organs of DS individuals. The study of the physiological roles of genes dysregulated in DS, as well as their characterization in murine models with gene(s) dosage imbalance, pointed out several genes, and functional noncoding elements to be particularly critical in the etiology of DS. Recent findings indicate that gene therapy strategies-based on the introduction of genetic elements by means of delivery vectors-toward the correction of phenotypic abnormalities in DS are also very promising tool to identify HSA21 and non-HSA21 gene candidates, contributing to DS phenotype. In this chapter, we focus on the impact of normalizing the expression levels of up or downregulated genes to rescue particular phenotypes of DS. Attempts toward gene-based treatment approaches in mouse models will be discussed as new opportunities to ameliorate DS alterations.

  10. Ethics of Gene Therapy Debated.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Borman, Stu

    1991-01-01

    Presented are the highlights of a press conference featuring biomedical ethicist LeRoy Walters of Georgetown University and attorney Andrew Kimbrell of the Foundation on Economic Trends. The opposing points of view of these two speakers serve to outline the pros and cons of the gene therapy issue. (CW)

  11. Ethics of Gene Therapy Debated.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Borman, Stu

    1991-01-01

    Presented are the highlights of a press conference featuring biomedical ethicist LeRoy Walters of Georgetown University and attorney Andrew Kimbrell of the Foundation on Economic Trends. The opposing points of view of these two speakers serve to outline the pros and cons of the gene therapy issue. (CW)

  12. Gene therapy for primary immunodeficiencies.

    PubMed

    Thrasher, Adrian J

    2008-05-01

    Primary immunodeficiencies are a group of disorders that are highly amenable to gene therapy because of their defined pathophysiology and the accessibility of the hematopoietic system to molecular intervention. The development of this new therapeutic modality has been driven by the established morbidity and mortality associated with conventional allogeneic stem cell transplantation, particularly in the human leukocyte antigen-mismatched setting. Recently, several clinical studies have shown that gamma retroviral gene transfer technology can produce major beneficial therapeutic effects, but, as for all cellular and pharmacologic treatment approaches, with a finite potential for toxicity. Newer developments in vector design showing promise in overcoming these issues are likely to establish gene therapy as an efficacious strategy for many forms of primary immunodeficiencies.

  13. [Gene therapy and Alzheimer's disease].

    PubMed

    Li, Jian; Li, Wenwen; Zhou, Jun

    2015-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the presence of extracellular β-amyloid in the senile plaques, intracellular aggregates of abnormal phosphorylation of tau protein in the neurofibrillary tangles, neuronal loss and cerebrovascular amyloidosis. The manifestations of clinical symptoms include memory impairment, cognitive decline, altered behavior and language deficit. Currently available drugs in AD therapy consist of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, NMDA receptor antagonists, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, etc. These drugs can only alleviate the symptoms of AD. Gene therapy is achieved by vector-mediated gene transfer technology, which can delivery DNA or RNA into target cells to promote the expression of a protective or therapeutic protein and silence certain virulence genes.

  14. Human embryonic stem cells and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Strulovici, Yael; Leopold, Philip L; O'Connor, Timothy P; Pergolizzi, Robert G; Crystal, Ronald G

    2007-05-01

    Human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) theoretically represent an unlimited supply of normal differentiated cells to engineer diseased tissues to regain normal function. However, before hESCs can be useful as human therapeutics, technologies must be developed to provide them with the specific signals required to differentiate in a controlled fashion, to regulate and/or shut down the growth of hESCs and their progeny once they have been transferred to the recipient, and to circumvent the recognition of non-autologous hESC-derived cells as foreign. In the context that gene therapy technologies represent strategies to deliver biological signals to address all of these challenges, this review sets out a framework for combined gene transfer/hESC therapies. We discuss how hESCs are derived, characterized, and differentiated into specific cell lineages, and we summarize the characteristics of the 500 hESC lines reported to date. The successes and failures of gene transfer to hESCs are reviewed for both non-viral and viral vectors, as are the challenges to successful use of gene transfer in developing hESC therapy. We also consider gene transfer as a means of facilitating growth and isolation of genetically modified hESCs and as a mechanism for mitigating adverse effects associated with administration of hESCs or their derivatives. Finally, we evaluate the challenges that are likely to be encountered in translating the promise of hESCs to the clinic.

  15. Combinatorial Gene Regulation Using Auto-Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Hermsen, Rutger; Ursem, Bas; ten Wolde, Pieter Rein

    2010-01-01

    As many as 59% of the transcription factors in Escherichia coli regulate the transcription rate of their own genes. This suggests that auto-regulation has one or more important functions. Here, one possible function is studied. Often the transcription rate of an auto-regulator is also controlled by additional transcription factors. In these cases, the way the expression of the auto-regulator responds to changes in the concentrations of the “input” regulators (the response function) is obviously affected by the auto-regulation. We suggest that, conversely, auto-regulation may be used to optimize this response function. To test this hypothesis, we use an evolutionary algorithm and a chemical–physical model of transcription regulation to design model cis-regulatory constructs with predefined response functions. In these simulations, auto-regulation can evolve if this provides a functional benefit. When selecting for a series of elementary response functions—Boolean logic gates and linear responses—the cis-regulatory regions resulting from the simulations indeed often exploit auto-regulation. Surprisingly, the resulting constructs use auto-activation rather than auto-repression. Several design principles show up repeatedly in the simulation results. They demonstrate how auto-activation can be used to generate sharp, switch-like activation and repression circuits and how linearly decreasing response functions can be obtained. Auto-repression, on the other hand, resulted only when a high response speed or a suppression of intrinsic noise was also selected for. The results suggest that, while auto-repression may primarily be valuable to improve the dynamical properties of regulatory circuits, auto-activation is likely to evolve even when selection acts on the shape of response function only. PMID:20548950

  16. Gene Therapy Shows Promise for Aggressive Lymphoma

    MedlinePlus

    ... fullstory_163824.html Gene Therapy Shows Promise for Aggressive Lymphoma Over one-third of patients appeared disease- ... 2017 (HealthDay News) -- An experimental gene therapy for aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphoma beat back more than a ...

  17. Gene therapy: Myth or reality?

    PubMed

    Fischer, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy has become a reality, although still a fragile one. Clinical benefit has been achieved over the last 17years in a limited number of medical conditions for which pathophysiological studies determined that they were favorable settings. They include inherited disorders of the immune system, leukodystrophies, possibly hemoglobinopathies, hemophilia B, and retinal dystrophies. Advances in the treatment of B-cell leukemias and lymphomas have also been achieved. Advances in vector development and possible usage of gene editing may lead to significant advances over the next years.

  18. [Application of gene therapy to oncologic ophthalmology].

    PubMed

    Philiponnet, A; Grange, J-D; Baggetto, L G

    2014-02-01

    Since the discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953 by Watson and Crick, our understanding of the genetic causes and the regulations involved in tumor development have hugely increased. The important amount of research developed since then has led to the development of gene therapy, which specifically targets and treats cancer cells by interacting with, and correcting their genetic material. This study is a review of the most accomplished research using gene therapy aimed at treating malignant ophthalmologic diseases, and focuses more specifically on uveal melanoma and retinoblastoma. Such approaches are remarkable regarding the efficiency and the cellular targeting specificity. However, gene therapy-based treatments are so recent that many long-term interrogations subsist. The majority of the reviewed studies are conducted in vitro or in murine models, thereby requiring several years before the resulting therapies become part of the daily ophthalmologists' arsenal. However, the recent spectacular developments based on advanced scientific knowledge justify an up-to-date review that would benefit the ophthalmologist community.

  19. Gene Therapy Applications to Cancer Treatment

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    Over the past ten years significant advances have been made in the fields of gene therapy and tumour immunology, such that there now exists a considerable body of evidence validating the proof in the principle of gene therapy based cancer vaccines. While clinical benefit has so far been marginal, data from preclinical and early clinical trials of gene therapy combined with standard therapies are strongly suggestive of additional benefit. Many reasons have been proposed to explain the paucity of clinical responses to single agent vaccination strategies including the poor antigenicity of tumour cells and the development of tolerance through down-regulation of MHC, costimulatory, signal transduction, and other molecules essential for the generation of strong immune responses. In addition, there is now evidence from animal models that the growing tumour may actively inhibit the host immune response. Removal of the primary tumour prior to T cell transfer from the spleen of cancer bearing animals, led to effective tumour cell line specific immunity in the recipient mouse suggesting that there is an ongoing tumour-host interaction. This model also illustrates the potential difficulties of clinical vaccine trials in patients with advanced stage disease. PMID:12686721

  20. Targeted Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2004-06-01

    From the studies performed during the last one year, we determined the effects of AAV-mediated anti-angiogenic gene therapy as a combination therapy...angiogenic gene therapy in combination with chemotherapy. In the next year, we will determine whether such a combination therapy would provide regression of established tumors.

  1. Gene Therapy for Primary Immunodeficiencies

    PubMed Central

    Rivat, Christine; Santilli, Giorgia; Gaspar, H. Bobby

    2012-01-01

    Abstract For over 40 years, primary immunodeficiencies (PIDs) have featured prominently in the development and refinement of human allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. More recently, ex vivo somatic gene therapy using autologous cells has provided remarkable evidence of clinical efficacy in patients without HLA-matched stem cell donors and in whom toxicity of allogeneic procedures is likely to be high. Together with improved preclinical models, a wealth of information has accumulated that has allowed development of safer, more sophisticated technologies and protocols that are applicable to a much broader range of diseases. In this review we summarize the status of these gene therapy trials and discuss the emerging application of similar strategies to other PIDs. PMID:22691036

  2. American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy

    MedlinePlus

    ... Join ASGCT! Job Bank Donate Media The American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy The American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy is the primary professional membership organization for gene and cell therapy. The Society's members are scientists, physicians, patient advocates, and other ...

  3. Safe Gene Therapy for Type 1 Diabetes

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-10-01

    Safe Gene Therapy for Type 1 Diabetes PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Massimo Trucco, M.D...4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Safe Gene Therapy for Type 1 Diabetes New Advanced Technology to Improve Prediction and Prevention 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER...scientific skepticism, the prospect of gene therapy -based treatments remains intriguing and the use of human stem cell research carries with it enor- mous

  4. Gene therapy of benign gynecological diseases☆

    PubMed Central

    Hassan, Memy H.; Othman, Essam E.; Hornung, Daniela; Al-Hendy, Ayman

    2015-01-01

    Gene therapy is the introduction of genetic material into patient’s cells to achieve therapeutic benefit. Advances in molecular biology techniques and better understanding of disease pathogenesis have validated the use of a variety of genes as potential molecular targets for gene therapy based approaches. Gene therapy strategies include: mutation compensation of dysregulated genes; replacement of defective tumor-suppressor genes; inactivation of oncogenes; introduction of suicide genes; immunogenic therapy and antiangiogenesis based approaches. Preclinical studies of gene therapy for various gynecological disorders have not only shown to be feasible, but also showed promising results in diseases such as uterine leiomyomas and endometriosis. In recent years, significant improvement in gene transfer technology has led to the development of targetable vectors, which have fewer side-effects without compromising their efficacy. This review provides an update on developing gene therapy approaches to treat common gynecological diseases such as uterine leiomyoma and endometriosis. PMID:19446586

  5. Orthopedic Gene Therapy in 2008

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Christopher H; Ghivizzani, Steven C; Robbins, Paul D

    2008-01-01

    Orthopedic disorders, although rarely fatal, are the leading cause of morbidity and impose a huge socioeconomic burden. Their prevalence will increase dramatically as populations age and gain weight. Many orthopedic conditions are difficult to treat by conventional means; however, they are good candidates for gene therapy. Clinical trials have already been initiated for arthritis and the aseptic loosening of prosthetic joints, and the development of bone-healing applications is at an advanced, preclinical stage. Other potential uses include the treatment of Mendelian diseases and orthopedic tumors, as well as the repair and regeneration of cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. Many of these goals should be achievable with existing technologies. The main barriers to clinical application are funding and regulatory issues, which in turn reflect major safety concerns and the opinion, in some quarters, that gene therapy should not be applied to nonlethal, nongenetic diseases. For some indications, advances in nongenetic treatments have also diminished enthusiasm. Nevertheless, the preclinical and early clinical data are impressive and provide considerable optimism that gene therapy will provide straightforward, effective solutions to the clinical management of several common debilitating disorders that are otherwise difficult and expensive to treat. PMID:19066598

  6. Progress and prospects: hurdles to cardiovascular gene therapy clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Hedman, M; Hartikainen, J; Ylä-Herttuala, S

    2011-08-01

    Several gene therapy approaches have been designed for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases. A positive finding is that the safety of cardiovascular gene therapy has been excellent even in long-term follow-up. However, several hurdles to this field are still present. A major disappointing feature of the trials is that while preclinical and uncontrolled phase-I gene therapy trials have been positive, none of the randomized controlled phase-II/III cardiovascular gene therapy trials have shown clinically relevant positive effects. Low gene transfer efficiency seems to be associated with several trials. A sophisticated efficient delivery method for cardiovascular applications is still lacking and only low concentrations of the gene product are produced in the target tissues. Only a few gene therapy vectors can be produced in large scale. In addition, inflammatory reactions against vectors and inability to regulate gene expression are still present. Furthermore, a strong placebo effect is affecting the results in gene therapy trials, and long-term trials have become more difficult to conduct because of the multiplicity of therapies applied simultaneously on the patients. This review summarizes advances and obstacles of current cardiovascular clinical gene therapy trials.

  7. Cancer gene therapy: challenges and opportunities.

    PubMed

    Scanlon, Kevin J

    2004-01-01

    Understanding the molecular basis of human disease has been the corner-stone of rationally designed molecular therapies. Medicine has a long history of treating patients with cell therapies (i.e., blood transfusions) and protein therapies (i.e., growth factors and cytokines). Gene therapies are the newest therapeutic strategy for treating human diseases. Where will gene therapy be in five years after the euphoria and frustrations of the last 14 years? This is a complex question, but the primary challenge for gene therapy will be to successfully deliver an efficacious dose of a therapeutic gene to the defective tissue. Will the delivery systems return to the early clinical trials of ex vivo gene therapy or will there still be a high demand for systemic therapy? Will systemic therapy continue to depend on viral vectors, or will non-viral and nano-particles become the new mode for gene delivery? The future success of gene therapy will be built on achievements in other fields, such as medical devices, cell therapy, protein therapy and nano-particle technology. This review describes the advances being made in the gene therapy field, as well as addressing the challenges of the near future for cancer gene therapy.

  8. Gene therapy for heart failure.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Barry

    2017-04-01

    Novel strategies are needed to treat the growing population of heart failure patients. While new drug and device based therapies have improved outcomes over the past several decades, heart failure patients continue to experience amongst the lowest quality of life of any chronic disease, high likelihood of being hospitalized and marked reduction in survival. Better understanding of many of the basic mechanisms involved in the development of heart failure has helped identify abnormalities that could potentially be targeted by gene transfer. Despite success in experimental animal models, translating gene transfer strategies from the laboratory to the clinic remains at an early stage. This review provides an introduction to gene transfer as a therapy for treating heart failure, describes some of the many factors that need to be addressed in order for it to be successful and discusses some of the recent studies that have been carried out in heart failure patients. Insights from these studies highlight both the enormous promise of gene transfer and the obstacles that still need to be overcome for this treatment approach to be successful. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Gene therapy for carcinoma of the breast

    PubMed Central

    Stoff-Khalili, MA; Dall, P; Curiel, DT

    2007-01-01

    In view of the limited success of available treatment modalities for breast cancer, alternative and complementary strategies need to be developed. The delineation of the molecular basis of breast cancer provides the possibility of specific intervention by gene therapy through the introduction of genetic material for therapeutic purposes. In this regard, several gene therapy approaches for carcinoma of the breast have been developed. These approaches can be divided into six broad categories: (1) mutation compensation, (2) molecular chemotherapy, (3) proapoptotic gene therapy, (4) antiangiogenic gene therapy, (5) genetic immunopotentiation, and (6) genetic modulation of resistance/sensitivity. Clinical trials for breast cancer have been initiated to evaluate safety, toxicity, and efficacy. Combined modality therapy with gene therapy and chemotherapy or radiation therapy has shown promising results. It is expected that as new therapeutic targets and approaches are identified and advances in vector design are realized, gene therapy will play an increasing role in clinical breast cancer treatment. PMID:16410823

  10. Advancement and prospects of tumor gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Chao; Wang, Qing-Tao; Liu, He; Zhang, Zhen-Zhu; Huang, Wen-Lin

    2011-03-01

    Gene therapy is one of the most attractive fields in tumor therapy. In past decades, significant progress has been achieved. Various approaches, such as viral and non-viral vectors and physical methods, have been developed to make gene delivery safer and more efficient. Several therapeutic strategies have evolved, including gene-based (tumor suppressor genes, suicide genes, antiangiogenic genes, cytokine and oxidative stress-based genes) and RNA-based (antisense oligonucleotides and RNA interference) approaches. In addition, immune response-based strategies (dendritic cell- and T cell-based therapy) are also under investigation in tumor gene therapy. This review highlights the progress and recent developments in gene delivery systems, therapeutic strategies, and possible clinical directions for gene therapy.

  11. Enhanced EJ Cell Killing of 125I Radiation by Combining with Cytosine Deaminase Gene Therapy Regulated by Synthetic Radio-Responsive Promoter

    PubMed Central

    Li, Ling; Kang, Lei; Wang, Rong-Fu; Yan, Ping; Zhao, Qian; Yin, Lei; Guo, Feng-qin

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Aim: To investigate the enhancing effect of radionuclide therapy by the therapeutic gene placed under the control of radio-responsive promoter. Methods: The recombinant lentivirus E8-codA-GFP, including a synthetic radiation-sensitive promoter E8, cytosine deaminase (CD) gene, and green fluorescent protein gene, was constructed. The gene expression activated by 125I radiation was assessed by observation of green fluorescence. The ability of converting 5-fluorocytosine (5-FC) to 5-fluorourial (5-FU) by CD enzyme was assessed by high-performance liquid chromatography. The viability of the infected cells exposed to 125I in the presence of 5-FC was determined by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay, and the infected cells exposed to 125I alone served as negative control and 5-FU as positive control. Results: The recombinant lentiviral vector was constructed successfully. On exposure of infected cells to 125I, green fluorescence can be observed and 5-FU can be detected. MTT assay showed that the survival rate for infected cells treated with 125I was lower compared with the 125I control group, but higher than the positive control group. Conclusion: The synthetic promoter E8 can induce the expression of downstream CD gene under 125I radiation, and the tumor killing effect of 125I can be enhanced by combining CD gene therapy with radiosensitive promoter. PMID:26382009

  12. Episomal vectors for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Ehrhardt, Anja; Haase, Rudolf; Schepers, Aloys; Deutsch, Manuel J; Lipps, Hans Joachim; Baiker, Armin

    2008-06-01

    The increasing knowledge of the molecular and genetic background of many different human diseases has led to the vision that genetic engineering might be used one day for their phenotypic correction. The main goal of gene therapy is to treat loss-of-function genetic disorders by delivering correcting therapeutic DNA sequences into the nucleus of a cell, allowing its long-term expression at physiologically relevant levels. Manifold different vector systems for the therapeutic gene delivery have been described over the recent years. They all have their individual advantages but also their individual limitations and must be judged on a careful risk/benefit analysis. Integrating vector systems can deliver genetic material to a target cell with high efficiency enabling long-term expression of an encoded transgene. The main disadvantage of integrating vector systems, however, is their potential risk of causing insertional mutagenesis. Episomal vector systems have the potential to avoid these undesired side effects, since they behave as separate extrachromosomal elements in the nucleus of a target cell. Within this article we present a comprehensive survey of currently available episomal vector systems for the genetic modification of mammalian cells. We will discuss their advantages and disadvantages and their applications in the context of basic research, biotechnology and gene therapy.

  13. Stem cell directed gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Engel, B C; Kohn, D B

    1999-05-01

    A potential therapeutic approach to HIV-1 infection is the genetic modification of cells of a patient to make them resistant to HIV-1. Hematopoietic stem cells are an attractive target for gene therapy of AIDS because of their ability to generate a broad repertoire of mature T lymphocytes, as well as the monocytic cells (macrophages, dendritic cells and microglia) which are also involved in HIV-1 pathogenesis. A number of synthetic "anti-HIV-1 genes" have been developed which inhibit HIV-1 replication. However, current methods for gene transfer into human hematopoietic stem cells, using retroviral vectors derived from the Moloney murine leukemia virus, have been minimally effective. Clinical trials performed to date in which hematopoietic cells from HIV-1-positive patients have been transduced with retroviral vectors and then reinfused have produced low to undetectable levels of gene-containing peripheral blood leukocytes. New vector delivery systems, such as lentiviral vectors, need to be developed to ensure efficient gene transfer and persistent transgene expression to provide life-long resistance to the cells targeted by HIV-1.

  14. American Society of Gene Therapy - Third Annual Meeting.

    PubMed

    Atkinson, E M

    2000-09-01

    The field of gene therapy, delivering genes to directly treat diseases, has had a remarkable year. This is no more evident than in the scope of the third annual meeting of the American Society of Gene Therapy (ASGT). Clear progress has been made in both ex vivo clinical protocols and in vivo administration. The meeting covered every major method of gene delivery, from injection of naked DNA to advanced synthetic gene delivery systems, as well as the major viral-based vectors. The optimism of the society was tempered, however, by the much-publicized death of a patient in a clinical trial at the University of Pennsylvania last year. There was a correspondingly high regulatory presence at the meeting, with several presentations by representatives of the US FDA and National Institutes of Health (NIH). Major clinical advances in gene therapy have been in genetic diseases, including hemophilia, severe combined immunodeficiency, and cystic fibrosis. Therapies are in later-stage clinical trials, and evidence of efficacy has been demonstrated, most notably by the apparent cure of SCID-affected children in Paris by ex vivo gene therapy with cytokine receptor subunit genes. Cancer gene therapy is also making significant headway, with many products entering phase II and III trials. Basic technology development is proceeding in vector targeting, enhancement of gene transfer efficiency, and regulating expression of therapeutic genes. In addition, basic research demonstrates the promise of new combined modes for treating diseases such as muscular dystrophy, lysosomal storage diseases and cardiovascular disease.

  15. Gene therapy of the brain: the trans-vascular approach.

    PubMed

    Schlachetzki, Felix; Zhang, Yun; Boado, Ruben J; Pardridge, William M

    2004-04-27

    Many chronic neurologic diseases do not respond to small molecule therapeutics, and have no effective long-term therapy. Gene therapy offers the promise of an effective cure for both genetic and acquired brain disease. However, the limiting problem in brain gene therapy is delivery to brain followed by regulation of the expression of the transgene. Present day gene vectors do not cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Consequently, brain gene therapy requires craniotomy and the local injection of a viral gene vector. However, there are few brain disorders that can be effectively treated with local injection. Most applications of gene therapy require global expression in the brain of the exogenous gene, and this can only be achieved with a noninvasive delivery through the BBB--the trans-vascular route to brain. An additional consideration is the potential toxicity of all viral and nonviral approaches, which may either integrate into the host genome and cause insertional mutagenesis or cause inflammation in the brain. Nonviral, noninvasive gene therapy of the brain is now possible with the development of a new approach to targeting therapeutic genes to the brain following an IV administration. This approach utilizes genetically engineered molecular Trojan horses, which ferry the gene across the BBB and into neurons. Global and reversible expression of therapeutic genes in the human brain without surgery and without viral vectors is now possible.

  16. Osmotic regulation of gene action.

    PubMed Central

    Douzou, P

    1994-01-01

    Most reactions involved in gene translation systems are ionic-dependent and may be explained in electrostatic terms. However, a number of observations of equilibria and rate processes making up the overall reactions clearly indicate that there is still an enormous gap between the rough picture of the mechanism of ionic regulation and the detailed behavior of reactions at the molecular level that hold the key to specific mechanisms. The present paper deals with possible osmotic contributions arising from the gel state of gene systems that are complementary to, and interdependent of, electrostatic contributions. This treatment, although still oversimplified, explains many previous observations by relating them to a general osmotic mechanism and suggests experimental approaches to studying the mechanisms of gene regulation in organelle-free and intact systems. PMID:8127862

  17. Gene therapy in the cornea: 2005--present.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Rajiv R; Tovey, Jonathan C K; Sharma, Ajay; Tandon, Ashish

    2012-01-01

    Successful restoration of vision in human patients with gene therapy affirmed its promise to cure ocular diseases and disorders. The efficacy of gene therapy is contingent upon vector and mode of therapeutic DNA introduction into targeted cells/tissues. The cornea is an ideal tissue for gene therapy due to its ease of access and relative immune-privilege. Considerable progress has been made in the field of corneal gene therapy in last 5 years. Several new gene transfer vectors, techniques and approaches have evolved. Although corneal gene therapy is still in its early stages of development, the potential of gene-based interventions to treat corneal abnormalities has begun to surface. Identification of next generation viral and nanoparticle vectors, characterization of delivered gene levels, localization, and duration in the cornea, and significant success in controlling corneal disorders, particularly fibrosis and angiogenesis, in experimental animal disease models, with no major side effects have propelled gene therapy a step closer toward establishing gene-based therapies for corneal blindness. Recently, researchers have assessed the delivery of therapeutic genes for corneal diseases and disorders due to trauma, infections, chemical, mechanical, and surgical injury, and/or abnormal wound healing. This review provides an update on the developments in gene therapy for corneal diseases and discusses the barriers that hinder its utilization for delivering genes in the cornea.

  18. Gene Therapy in the Cornea: 2005-present

    PubMed Central

    Mohan, Rajiv R.; Tovey, Jonathan C.K.; Sharma, Ajay; Tandon, Ashish

    2011-01-01

    Successful restoration of vision in human patients with gene therapy affirmed its promise to cure ocular diseases and disorders. The efficacy of gene therapy is contingent upon vector and mode of therapeutic DNA introduction into targeted cells/tissues. The cornea is an ideal tissue for gene therapy due to its ease of access and relative immune-privilege. Considerable progress has been made in the field of corneal gene therapy in last 5 years. Several new gene transfer vectors, techniques and approaches have evolved. Although corneal gene therapy is still in its early stages of development, the potential of gene-based interventions to treat corneal abnormalities have begun to surface. Identification of next generation viral and nanoparticle vectors, characterization of delivered gene levels, localization, and duration in the cornea, and significant success in controlling corneal disorders, particularly fibrosis and angiogenesis, in experimental animal disease models, with no major side effects have propelled gene therapy a step closer towards establishing gene-based therapies for corneal blindness. Recently, researchers have assessed the delivery of therapeutic genes for corneal diseases and disorders due to trauma, infections, chemical, mechanical, and surgical injury, and/or abnormal wound healing. This review provides an update on the developments in gene therapy for corneal diseases and discusses the barriers that hinder its utilization for delivering genes in the cornea. PMID:21967960

  19. Hematopoietic Stem Cell Expansion and Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Watts, Korashon Lynn; Adair, Jennifer; Kiem, Hans-Peter

    2012-01-01

    Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) gene therapy remains a highly attractive treatment option for many disorders including hematologic conditions, immunodeficiencies including HIV/AIDS, and other genetic disorders like lysosomal storage diseases, among others. In this review, we discuss the successes, side effects, and limitations of current gene therapy protocols. In addition, we describe the opportunities presented by implementing ex vivo expansion of gene-modified HSCs, as well as summarize the most promising ex vivo expansion techniques currently available. We conclude by discussing how some of the current limitations of HSC gene therapy could be overcome by combining novel HSC expansion strategies with gene therapy. PMID:21999373

  20. Gene therapy for bone healing.

    PubMed

    Evans, Christopher H

    2010-06-23

    Clinical problems in bone healing include large segmental defects, spinal fusions, and the nonunion and delayed union of fractures. Gene-transfer technologies have the potential to aid healing by permitting the local delivery and sustained expression of osteogenic gene products within osseous lesions. Key questions for such an approach include the choice of transgene, vector and gene-transfer strategy. Most experimental data have been obtained using cDNAs encoding osteogenic growth factors such as bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2), BMP-4 and BMP-7, in conjunction with both nonviral and viral vectors using in vivo and ex vivo delivery strategies. Proof of principle has been convincingly demonstrated in small-animal models. Relatively few studies have used large animals, but the results so far are encouraging. Once a reliable method has been developed, it will be necessary to perform detailed pharmacological and toxicological studies, as well as satisfy other demands of the regulatory bodies, before human clinical trials can be initiated. Such studies are very expensive and often protracted. Thus, progress in developing a clinically useful gene therapy for bone healing is determined not only by scientific considerations, but also by financial constraints and the ambient regulatory environment.

  1. Gene therapy for bone healing

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Christopher H.

    2015-01-01

    Clinical problems in bone healing include large segmental defects, nonunion and delayed union of fractures, and spinal fusions. Gene-transfer technologies have the potential to aid healing by permitting the local delivery and sustained expression of osteogenic gene products within osseous lesions. Key questions for such an approach include the choice of transgene, vector and gene-transfer strategy. Most experimental data have been obtained using cDNAs encoding osteogenic growth factors such as bone morphogenetic protein-2 (BMP-2), BMP-4 and BMP-7, in conjunction with both nonviral and viral vectors using in vivo and ex vivo delivery strategies. Proof of principle has been convincingly demonstrated in small-animal models. Relatively few studies have used large animals, but the results so far are encouraging. Once a reliable method has been developed, it will be necessary to perform detailed pharmacological and toxicological studies, as well as satisfy other demands of the regulatory bodies, before human clinical trials can be initiated. Such studies are very expensive and often protracted. Thus, progress in developing a clinically useful gene therapy for bone healing is determined not only by scientific considerations, but also by financial constraints and the ambient regulatory environment. PMID:20569532

  2. Hox genes regulation in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Soshnikova, Natalia

    2014-01-01

    Hox genes encode transcription factors defining cellular identities along the major and secondary body axes. Their coordinated expression in both space and time is critical for embryonic patterning. Accordingly, Hox genes transcription is tightly controlled at multiple levels, and involves an intricate combination of local and long-range cis-regulatory elements. Recent studies revealed that in addition to transcription factors, dynamic patterns of histone marks and higher-order chromatin structure are important determinants of Hox gene regulation. Furthermore, the emerging picture suggests an involvement of various species of non-coding RNA in targeting activating and repressive complexes to Hox clusters. I review these recent developments and discuss their relevance to the control of Hox gene expression in vivo, as well as to our understanding of transcriptional regulatory mechanisms.

  3. Regulation of ABO gene expression.

    PubMed

    Kominato, Yoshihiko; Hata, Yukiko; Matsui, Kazuhiro; Takizawa, Hisao

    2005-07-01

    The ABO blood group system is important in blood transfusions and in identifying individuals during criminal investigations. Two carbohydrate antigens, the A and B antigens, and their antibodies constitute this system. Although biochemical and molecular genetic studies have demonstrated the molecular basis of the histo-blood group ABO system, some aspects remain to be elucidated. To explain the molecular basis of how the ABO genes are controlled in cell type-specific expression, during normal cell differentiation, and in cancer cells with invasive and metastatic potential that lack A/B antigens, it is essential to understand the regulatory mechanism of ABO gene transcription. We review the transcriptional regulation of the ABO gene, including positive and negative elements in the upstream region of the gene, and draw some inferences that help to explain the phenomena described above.

  4. Gene therapy for obesity: progress and prospects.

    PubMed

    Gao, Mingming; Liu, Dexi

    2014-06-01

    Advances in understanding the molecular basis of obesity and obesity-associated diseases have made gene therapy a vital approach in coping with this world-wide epidemic. Gene therapy for obesity aims to increase or decrease gene product in favor of lipolysis and energy expenditure, leading toward fat reduction and loss of body weight. It involves successful delivery and expression of therapeutic genes in appropriate cells. The ultimate goal of gene therapy is to restore and maintain energy homeostasis. Here we summarize progress made in recent years in identifying genes responsible for obesity and present examples where the gene therapy approach has been applied to treating or preventing obesity. Discussion on advantages and limitations of gene therapy strategies employed is provided. The intent of this review is to inspire further studies toward the development of new strategies for successful treatment of obesity and obesity-associated diseases.

  5. Gene therapy for allergic diseases.

    PubMed

    Chuang, Ya-Hui; Yang, Yao-Hsu; Wu, Si-Jie; Chiang, Bor-Luen

    2009-06-01

    Allergic diseases, such as allergic asthma, allergic rhinitis, atopic dermatitis, conjunctivitis, urticaria, food allergy, and/or anaphylaxis, are associated with the skewing of immune responses towards a T helper 2 (TH2) phenotype, resulting in eosinophilic inflammation. TH2 cytokines, such as interleukin (IL)-4, IL-5 and IL-13, promote IgE production, mast cell differentiation, and eosinophil growth, migration and activation which then lead to the pathologic abnormalities in allergic diseases. Moreover, the impaired function of regulatory T cells has been noted in allergic diseases. To date, treatments for allergic diseases, such as antihistamines, corticosteroids, bronchodilators and some allergen-specific immunotherapy, are effective but costly and require long-term and recurrent drug administration. Gene therapy has been shown to be an easy, effective, and convenient treatment by delivering the allergen or the therapeutic protein in the form of plasmid DNA in vivo to modulate allergic immune responses. We summarize here the recent advances of gene therapy in allergic diseases and discuss the challenges in clinical application.

  6. Gene therapy targeting inflammation in atherosclerosis.

    PubMed

    Van-Assche, Tim; Huygelen, Veronique; Crabtree, Mark J; Antoniades, Charalambos

    2011-12-01

    The extensive cross-talk between the immune system and vasculature leading to the infiltration of immune cells into the vascular wall is a major step in atherogenesis. In this process, reactive oxygen species play a crucial role, by inducing the oxidation of LDL and the formation of foam cells, and by activating a number of redox-sensitive transcriptional factors such as nuclear factor kappa B (NFkappa B) or activating protein 1 (AP1), that regulate the expression of multiple pro/anti inflammatory genes involved in atherogenesis. Delivery of genes encoding antioxidant defense enzymes (e.g. superoxide dismutase, catalase, glutathione peroxidase or heme oxygenase- 1) or endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS), suppress atherogenesis in animal models. Similarly, delivery of genes encoding regulators of redox sensitive transcriptional factors (e.g. NF-kappa B, AP-1, Nrf2 etc) or reactive oxygen species scavengers have been successfully used in experimental studies. Despite the promising results from basic science, the clinical applicability of these strategies has proven to be particularly challenging. Issues regarding the vectors used to deliver the genes (and the development of immune responses or other side effects) and the inability of sufficient and sustained local expression of these genes at the target-tissue are some of the main reasons preventing optimism regarding the use of these strategies at a clinical level. Therefore, although premature to discuss about effective "gene therapy" in atherosclerosis at a clinical level, gene delivery techniques opened new horizons in cardiovascular research, and the development of new vectors may allow their extensive use in clinical trials in the future.

  7. Recent progress in cerebrovascular gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Sato, Naoyuki; Shimamura, Munehisa; Morishita, Ryuichi

    2005-07-01

    Gene therapy provides a potential strategy for the treatment of cardiovascular disease such as peripheral arterial disease, myocardial infarction, restenosis after angioplasty, and vascular bypass graft occlusion. Currently, more than 20 clinical studies of gene therapy for cardiovascular disease are in progress. Although cerebrovascular gene therapy has not proceeded to clinical trials, in contrast to cardiovascular gene therapy, there have been several trials in experimental models. Three major potential targets for cerebrovascular gene therapy are vasospasm after subarachnoid hemorrhage (SAH), ischemic cerebrovascular disease, and restenosis after angioplasty, for which current therapy is often inadequate. In experimental SAH models, strategies using genes encoding a vasodilating protein or decoy oligodeoxynucleotides have been reported to be effective against vasospasm after SAH. In experimental ischemic cerebrovascular disease, gene therapy using growth factors, such as Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), Fibroblast growth factor-2 (FGF-2), or Hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), has been reported to be effective for neuroprotection and angiogenesis. Nevertheless, cerebrovascular gene therapy for clinical human treatment still has some problems, such as transfection efficiency and the safety of vectors. Development of an effective and safe delivery system for a target gene will make human cerebrovascular gene therapy possible.

  8. Immunomodulatory gene therapy in lysosomal storage disorders.

    PubMed

    Koeberl, Dwight D; Kishnani, Priya S

    2009-12-01

    Significant advances in therapy for lysosomal storage disorders have occurred with an accelerating pace over the past decade. Although enzyme replacement therapy has improved the outcome of lysosomal storage disorders, antibody responses have occurred and sometimes prevented efficacy, especially in cross-reacting immune material negative patients with Pompe disease. Preclinical gene therapy experiments have revealed the relevance of immune responses to long-term efficacy. The choice of regulatory cassette played a critical role in evading humoral and cellular immune responses to gene therapy in knockout mouse models, at least in adult animals. Liver-specific regulatory cassettes prevented antibody formation and enhanced the efficacy of gene therapy. Regulatory T cells prevented transgene directed immune responses, as shown by adoptive transfer of antigen-specific immune tolerance to enzyme therapy. Immunomodulatory gene therapy with a very low vector dose could enhance the efficacy of enzyme therapy in Pompe disease and other lysosomal storage disorders.

  9. Immunomodulatory gene therapy in lysosomal storage disorders

    PubMed Central

    Koeberl, D.D.; Kishnani, P.S.

    2010-01-01

    Significant advances in therapy for lysosomal storage disorders have occurred with an accelerating pace over the past decade. Although enzyme replacement therapy has improved the outcome of lysosomal storage disorders, antibody responses have occurred and sometimes prevented efficacy, especially in cross-reacting immune material negative patients with Pompe disease. Preclinical gene therapy experiments have revealed the relevance of immune responses to long-term efficacy. The choice of regulatory cassette played a critical role in evading humoral and cellular immune responses to gene therapy in knockout mouse models, at least in adult animals. Liver-specific regulatory cassettes prevented antibody formation and enhanced the efficacy of gene therapy. Regulatory T cells prevented transgene directed immune responses, as shown by adoptive transfer of antigen-specific immune tolerance to enzyme therapy. Immunomodulatory gene therapy with a very low vector dose could enhance the efficacy of enzyme therapy in Pompe disease and other lysosomal storage disorders. PMID:19807648

  10. Targeted Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1998-08-01

    AD AWARD NUMBER DAMD17-97-1-7232 TITLE: Targeted Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Jinha M. Park CONTRACTING ORGANIZATION...FUNDING NUMBERS Targeted Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer DAMD17-97-1-7232 6. AUTHOR(S) Jinha M. Park 7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION NAME(S) AND ADDRESS(ES) 8...of surface mAb has been internalized by receptor-mediated endocytosis. These mAbs show promise in the specific delivery of gene therapy vectors

  11. Cardiac gene therapy: are we there yet?

    PubMed

    Matkar, P N; Leong-Poi, H; Singh, K K

    2016-08-01

    The incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) is increasing throughout the world and is associated with elevated morbidity and mortality. Gene therapy to treat cardiac dysfunction is gaining importance because of the limited therapeutic benefit offered by pharmacotherapies. The growing knowledge of the complex signaling pathways and the development of sophisticated vectors and delivery systems, are facilitating identification and targeting of specific molecular candidates involved in initiation and progression of CVDs. Several preclinical and clinical studies have shown the therapeutic efficiency of gene therapy in different disease models and patients. Hence, gene therapy might plausibly become an unconventional treatment modality for CVD patients. In this review, we summarize the gene delivery carriers, modes of delivery, recent preclinical/clinical studies and potential therapeutic targets. We also briefly discuss the existing limitations of gene therapy, technical challenges surrounding gene carriers and delivery systems, and some approaches to overcome these limitations for bringing CVD gene therapy one step closer to reality.

  12. Stochastic Fluctuations in Gene Regulation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-04-01

    AFRL-IF- RS -TR-2005-126 Final Technical Report April 2005 STOCHASTIC FLUCTUATIONS IN GENE REGULATION Boston University...be releasable to the general public, including foreign nations. AFRL-IF- RS -TR-2005-126 has been reviewed and is approved for publication...AGENCY REPORT NUMBER AFRL-IF- RS -TR-2005-126 11. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES AFRL Project Engineer: Peter J. Costianes/IFED/(315) 330-4030

  13. Vibrio Fischeri Symbiosis Gene Regulation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-08-12

    bacterium. PROGRESS (Year 1): 1. Regulation of V. fischeri lux gene expression in E . coli . A . Transcriptional control of luxR expression by cAMP-CRP and...comparable to cya and crp mutants of E . coli and Salmonella typhimuriwn, including a pleiotropic carbohydrate negative phenotype and a decreased...availability of appropriate mutants. Conditions for iron restriction of growth of E . coli that result in a stimulation of luminescence and luciferase

  14. Update on clinical gene therapy in childhood

    PubMed Central

    Qasim, Waseem; Gaspar, H Bobby; Thrasher, Adrian J

    2007-01-01

    The successful use of gene therapy to correct rare immune system disorders has highlighted the enormous potential of such therapies. We review the current state of gene therapy for childhood immune system disorders, and consider why these conditions have been particularly amenable to genetic correction. As with all emerging therapies, there have been unexpected side effects and their underlying mechanisms are the subject of intense research. Minimising such risks through improved vector design will play an important role in developing the next generation of gene based therapies and extending their applicability. PMID:17954483

  15. Synergistic nanomedicine by combined gene and photothermal therapy.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jinhwan; Kim, Jihoon; Jeong, Cherlhyun; Kim, Won Jong

    2016-03-01

    To date, various nanomaterials with the ability for gene delivery or photothermal effect have been developed in the field of biomedicine. The therapeutic potential of these nanomaterials has raised considerable interests in their use in potential next-generation strategies for effective anticancer therapy. In particular, the advancement of novel nanomedicines utilizing both therapeutic strategies of gene delivery and photothermal effect has generated much optimism regarding the imminent development of effective and successful cancer treatments. In this review, we discuss current research progress with regard to combined gene and photothermal therapy. This review focuses on synergistic therapeutic systems combining gene regulation and photothermal ablation as well as logically designed nano-carriers aimed at enhancing the delivery efficiency of therapeutic genes using the photothermal effect. The examples detailed in this review provide insight to further our understanding of combinatorial gene and photothermal therapy, thus paving the way for the design of promising nanomedicines.

  16. Gene therapy returns to centre stage.

    PubMed

    Naldini, Luigi

    2015-10-15

    Recent clinical trials of gene therapy have shown remarkable therapeutic benefits and an excellent safety record. They provide evidence for the long-sought promise of gene therapy to deliver 'cures' for some otherwise terminal or severely disabling conditions. Behind these advances lie improved vector designs that enable the safe delivery of therapeutic genes to specific cells. Technologies for editing genes and correcting inherited mutations, the engagement of stem cells to regenerate tissues and the effective exploitation of powerful immune responses to fight cancer are also contributing to the revitalization of gene therapy.

  17. Towards gene therapy for deafness.

    PubMed

    Di Domenico, Marina; Ricciardi, Carmela; Martone, Tiziana; Mazzarella, Nicoletta; Cassandro, Claudia; Chiarella, Giuseppe; D'Angelo, Luigi; Cassandro, Ettore

    2011-10-01

    Many hearing disorders are associated with the damage or loss of sensory hair cells (HC) which can produce a profound and irreversible deafness. Apoptosis pathway is reported to play an important role leading to rapid expansion of the HC lesion after exposure to intense noise. Furthermore, progress made over the last year in understanding molecular mechanisms involved in the proliferative and regenerative capacity of sensory cells in the mammalian inner ear has raised the possibility that targeted therapies might prevent the loss of these cells and preserve the patient's hearing. A first step towards the successful therapeutic exploitation is a better understanding of the different pathways that control survival and proliferation of sensory cells. In this review, we provide an overview of recent findings concerning the possibility to prevent apoptosis in auditory cells. We also show the current knowledge on the molecular mechanisms involved in the potential regenerative behavior of these cells and the progress of gene therapy to prevent deafness noise-induced.

  18. Regulatory Oversight of Gene Therapy and Cell Therapy Products in Korea.

    PubMed

    Choi, Minjoung; Han, Euiri; Lee, Sunmi; Kim, Taegyun; Shin, Won

    2015-01-01

    The Ministry of Food and Drug Safety regulates gene therapy and cell therapy products as biological products under the authority of the Pharmaceutical Affairs Act. As with other medicinal products, gene therapy and cell therapy products are subject to approval for use in clinical trials and for a subsequent marketing authorization and to post-market surveillance. Research and development of gene therapy and cell therapy products have been progressing rapidly in Korea with extensive investment, offering great potential for the treatment of various serious diseases. To facilitate development of safe and effective products and provide more opportunities to patients suffering from severe diseases, several regulatory programs, such as the use of investigational products for emergency situations, fast-track approval, prereview of application packages, and intensive regulatory consultation, can be applied to these products. The regulatory approach for these innovative products is case by case and founded on science-based review that is flexible and balances the risks and benefits.

  19. [Scientific ethics of gene therapy for individuals. The urgency for DNA gene surgery].

    PubMed

    Valenzuela, Carlos Y

    2003-10-01

    Gene therapy for individuals is mainly directed to somatic or germ cells. The present technology aims to insert a DNA segment in the recipient cells. This therapy is useful in Mendelian recessive diseases. There is an ethical moratorium to perform insertion gene therapy in germ cells, because this procedure increases the human genome. Somatic cell gene therapy cures individuals but increases the gene frequency of genetic diseases in the population. This occurs because the descendants of the cured patient should carry his or her "ill" genes. We denots by "DNA gene surgery" the procedure that replaces "ill" nucleotide(s) by healthy one(s) conserving the genome size and the gene context of expression and regulation. Several procedures for gene surgery have been applied to cells and animals. Those based on DNA repair as Chimeric RNA/DNA, one stranded oligonucleotides and tristranded DNA. Those based on DNA recombination with oligo DNA or one stranded DNA, and transposable DNA segments. Gene surgery can be applied to germ cell gene therapy without ethical contraindications. It can cure Mendelian dominant diseases and it can be applied to heterozygotes. It preserves the regulation and expression gene context. If a technical safe procedure is available, the entire mankind could be treated and cured of all the Mendelian diseases, in one generation. Susceptibilities for all diseases could also be treated. The moratorium for research on germ cell gene therapy by gene surgery should be interrupted. Safe gene surgery is a moral imperative for gene therapy of patients and their descendants, for the treatment of dominant genetic diseases and for heterozygous carriers of recessive disorders.

  20. Potential application of gene therapy to X-linked agammaglobulinemia.

    PubMed

    Moreau, Thomas; Calmels, Boris; Barlogis, Vincent; Michel, Gérard; Tonnelle, Cécile; Chabannon, Christian

    2007-08-01

    X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA), or Bruton's disease, is the most common human primary humoral immunodeficiency. XLA is caused by mutations of the Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK), a key regulator of B-cell physiology. Since the mid 80's, substitutive therapy by intravenous gammaglobulin infusions has significantly improved XLA patient survival and quality of life. Nevertheless, some frequent affections persist despite treatment, and lead to handicapping and further to morbid clinical complications for XLA individuals. Development of gene therapy by transfer of the BTK gene into hematopoietic progenitors could represent an alternative strategy for the treatment of Bruton's disease, with the advantage of a definitive cure for XLA patients. Gene therapy of XLA could be considered as a paradigm for future expansion of gene therapy approaches for many other diseases, since future utilization may be strictly dependent on a marked improvement of risk-benefit ratio compared to pre-existing treatments.

  1. Approaches to mitochondrial gene therapy.

    PubMed

    D'Souza, Gerard G M; Weissig, Volkmar

    2004-09-01

    Since their discovery during the end of the 80's the number of diseases found to be associated with defects in the mitochondrial genome has grown significantly. Organs affected by mutations in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) include in decreasing order of vulnerability the brain, skeletal muscle, heart, kidney and liver. Hence neuromuscular and neurodegenerative diseases represent the two largest groups of mtDNA diseases. Despite major advances in understanding mtDNA defects at the genetic and biochemical level, there is however no satisfactory treatment available to the vast majority of patients. This is largely due to the fact that most of these patients have respiratory chain defects, i.e. defects that involve the final common pathway of oxidative metabolism, making it impossible to bypass the defect by administering alternative metabolic carriers of energy. Conventional biochemical treatment having reached an impasse, the exploration of gene therapeutic approaches for patients with mtDNA defects is warranted. For now mitochondrial gene therapy appears to be only theoretical and speculative. Any possibility for gene replacement is dependent on the development of an efficient mitochondrial transfection vector. In this review we describe the current state of the development of mitochondria-specific DNA delivery systems. We summarize our own efforts in exploring the properties of dequalinium and other similar cationic bolaamphiphiles with delocalized charge centers, for the design of a vector suited for the transport of DNA to mitochondria in living cells. Further, we outline some unique hurdles that need to be overcome if the development of such delivery systems is to progress.

  2. Current status of gene therapy for cancer.

    PubMed

    Walther, Wolfgang; Schlag, Peter M

    2013-11-01

    In recent years, remarkable progress has been made in the development of cancer gene therapy into an applicable treatment modality for immunogene, suicide, gene correction and oncolytic therapies. New exciting developments for gene suppression or miRNA therapies are under way. The efforts are focused on more efficient and specific attack at known and novel targets, improvement of vector delivery and therapeutic efficacy. In this review, promising and new gene therapy approaches and clinical studies are briefly discussed to highlight important future directions of preclinical and clinical efforts. Apart from progress for vector development and even more important, improvements for suicide, T-cell-based, oncolytic virus therapies were achieved. In addition, new emerging therapies are successfully developed, which are particularly promising for siRNA-based technologies applied to gene suppression therapy. Novel approaches, such as transcription factor ODN-based decoy, complement the spectrum of current cancer gene therapy. In summary, cancer gene therapy has made remarkable progress in the improvement/refinement of existing strategies and delivery systems. The field is moving toward a therapeutic option, which will also be applicable for the treatment of disseminated metastases. Furthermore, numerous new approaches are about to be translated in clinical trials.

  3. Gene therapy prospects--intranasal delivery of therapeutic genes.

    PubMed

    Podolska, Karolina; Stachurska, Anna; Hajdukiewicz, Karolina; Małecki, Maciej

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy is recognized to be a novel method for the treatment of various disorders. Gene therapy strategies involve gene manipulation on broad biological processes responsible for the spreading of diseases. Cancer, monogenic diseases, vascular and infectious diseases are the main targets of gene therapy. In order to obtain valuable experimental and clinical results, sufficient gene transfer methods are required. Therapeutic genes can be administered into target tissues via gene carriers commonly defined as vectors. The retroviral, adenoviral and adeno-associated virus based vectors are most frequently used in the clinic. So far, gene preparations may be administered directly into target organs or by intravenous, intramuscular, intratumor or intranasal injections. It is common knowledge that the number of gene therapy clinical trials has rapidly increased. However, some limitations such as transfection efficiency and stable and long-term gene expression are still not resolved. Consequently, great effort is focused on the evaluation of new strategies of gene delivery. There are many expectations associated with intranasal delivery of gene preparations for the treatment of diseases. Intranasal delivery of therapeutic genes is regarded as one of the most promising forms of pulmonary gene therapy research. Gene therapy based on inhalation of gene preparations offers an alternative way for the treatment of patients suffering from such lung diseases as cystic fibrosis, alpha-1-antitrypsin defect, or cancer. Experimental and first clinical trials based on plasmid vectors or recombinant viruses have revealed that gene preparations can effectively deliver therapeutic or marker genes to the cells of the respiratory tract. The noninvasive intranasal delivery of gene preparations or conventional drugs seems to be very encouraging, although basic scientific research still has to continue.

  4. Gene therapy for high-grade glioma

    PubMed Central

    Natsume, Atsushi

    2008-01-01

    The treatment of high-grade gliomas remains difficult despite recent advances in surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. True advances may emerge from the increasing understanding in molecular biology and discovery of novel mechanisms for the delivery of tumoricidal agents. In an attempt to overcome this formidable neoplasm, molecular approaches using gene therapy have been investigated clinically since 1992. The clinical trials have mainly been classified into three approaches: suicide gene therapy, immune gene therapy and oncolytic viral therapy. In this article, we review these approaches, which have been studied in previous and ongoing clinical trials. PMID:19262115

  5. Gene Therapy and Wound Healing

    PubMed Central

    Eming, Sabine A.; Krieg, Thomas; Davidson, Jeffrey M

    2007-01-01

    Wound repair involves the sequential interaction of various cell types, extracellular matrix molecules, and soluble mediators. During the past 10 years, much new information on signals controlling wound cell behavior has emerged. This knowledge has led to a number of novel_therapeutic strategies. In particular, the local delivery of pluripotent growth factor molecules to the injured tissue has been intensively investigated over the past decade. Limited success of clinical trails indicates that a crucial aspect of the growth factor wound-healing strategy is the effective delivery of these polypeptides to the wound site. A molecular approach in which genetically modified cells synthesize and deliver the desired growth factor in regulated fashion has been used to overcome the limitations associated with the (topical) application of recombinant growth factor proteins. We have summarized the molecular and cellular basis of repair mechanisms and their failure, and we give an overview of techniques and studies applied to gene transfer in tissue repair. PMID:17276205

  6. Noncoding oligonucleotides: the belle of the ball in gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Shum, Ka-To; Rossi, John J

    2015-01-01

    Gene therapy carries the promise of cures for many diseases based on manipulating the expression of a person's genes toward the therapeutic goal. The relevance of noncoding oligonucleotides to human disease is attracting widespread attention. Noncoding oligonucleotides are not only involved in gene regulation, but can also be modified into therapeutic tools. There are many strategies that leverage noncoding oligonucleotides for gene therapy, including small interfering RNAs, antisense oligonucleotides, aptamers, ribozymes, decoys, and bacteriophage phi 29 RNAs. In this chapter, we will provide a broad, comprehensive overview of gene therapies that use noncoding oligonucleotides for disease treatment. The mechanism and development of each therapeutic will be described, with a particular focus on its clinical development. Finally, we will discuss the challenges associated with developing nucleic acid therapeutics and the prospects for future success.

  7. Gene regulation by mechanical forces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oluwole, B. O.; Du, W.; Mills, I.; Sumpio, B. E.

    1997-01-01

    Endothelial cells are subjected to various mechanical forces in vivo from the flow of blood across the luminal surface of the blood vessel. The purpose of this review was to examine the data available on how these mechanical forces, in particular cyclic strain, affect the expression and regulation of endothelial cell function. Studies from various investigators using models of cyclic strain in vitro have shown that various vasoactive mediators such as nitric oxide and prostacyclin are induced by the effect of mechanical deformation, and that the expression of these mediators may be regulated at the transcription level by mechanical forces. There also seems to be emerging evidence that endothelial cells may also act as mechanotransducers, whereby the transmission of external forces induces various cytoskeletal changes and second messenger cascades. Furthermore, it seems these forces may act on specific response elements of promoter genes.

  8. Engineering Factor Viii for Hemophilia Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Sean A.; Dong, Biao; Firrman, Jenni A.; Moore, Andrea R.; Sang, Nianli; Xiao, Weidong

    2012-01-01

    Current treatment of hemophilia A by intravenous infusion of factor VIII (fVIII) concentrates is very costly and has a potential adverse effect of developing inhibitors. Gene therapy, on the other hand, can potentially overcome these limitations associated with fVIII replacement therapy. Although hemophilia B gene therapy has achieved promising outcomes in human clinical trials, hemophilia A gene therapy lags far behind. Compared to factor IX, fVIII is a large protein which is difficult to express at sustaining therapeutic levels when delivered by either viral or non-viral vectors. To improve fVIII gene delivery, numerous strategies have been exploited to engineer the fVIII molecule and overcome the hurdles preventing long term and high level expression. Here we reviewed these strategies, and discussed their pros and cons in human gene therapy of hemophilia A. PMID:23565342

  9. Mathematical Models of Gene Regulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackey, Michael C.

    2004-03-01

    This talk will focus on examples of mathematical models for the regulation of repressible operons (e.g. the tryptophan operon), inducible operons (e.g. the lactose operon), and the lysis/lysogeny switch in phage λ. These ``simple" gene regulatory elements can display characteristics experimentally of rapid response to perturbations and bistability, and biologically accurate mathematical models capture these aspects of the dynamics. The models, if realistic, are always nonlinear and contain significant time delays due to transcriptional and translational delays that pose substantial problems for the analysis of the possible ranges of dynamics.

  10. QB1 - Stochastic Gene Regulation

    SciTech Connect

    Munsky, Brian

    2012-07-23

    Summaries of this presentation are: (1) Stochastic fluctuations or 'noise' is present in the cell - Random motion and competition between reactants, Low copy, quantization of reactants, Upstream processes; (2) Fluctuations may be very important - Cell-to-cell variability, Cell fate decisions (switches), Signal amplification or damping, stochastic resonances; and (3) Some tools are available to mode these - Kinetic Monte Carlo simulations (SSA and variants), Moment approximation methods, Finite State Projection. We will see how modeling these reactions can tell us more about the underlying processes of gene regulation.

  11. Cancer gene therapy targeting cellular apoptosis machinery.

    PubMed

    Jia, Lin-Tao; Chen, Si-Yi; Yang, An-Gang

    2012-11-01

    The unraveling of cellular apoptosis machinery provides novel targets for cancer treatment, and gene therapy targeting this suicidal system has been corroborated to cause inflammation-free autonomous elimination of neoplastic cells. The apoptotic machinery can be targeted by introduction of a gene encoding an inducer, mediator or executioner of apoptotic cell death or by inhibition of anti-apoptotic gene expression. Strategies targeting cancer cells, which are achieved by selective gene delivery, specific gene expression or secretion of target proteins via genetic modification of autologous cells, dictate the outcome of apoptosis-based cancer gene therapy. Despite so far limited clinical success, gene therapy targeting the apoptotic machinery has great potential to benefit patients with threatening malignancies provided the availability of efficient and specific gene delivery and administration systems.

  12. Microenvironmental Regulation of Biomacromolecular Therapies

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-06-01

    Expert Opin. Biol. Ther. 4, 65–73 (2004). 23. Theys, J. et al. Specific targeting of cytosine deaminase to solid tumors by engineered Clostridium ... acetobutylicum . Cancer Gene Ther. 8, 294–297 (2001). 24. Luo, D. & Saltzman, W. M. Synthetic DNA delivery systems. Nature Biotech. 18, 33–37 (2000

  13. The future of human gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Rubanyi, G M

    2001-06-01

    Human gene therapy (HGT) is defined as the transfer of nucleic acids (DNA) to somatic cells of a patient which results in a therapeutic effect, by either correcting genetic defects or by overexpressing proteins that are therapeutically useful. In the past, both the professional and the lay community had high (sometimes unreasonably high) expectations from HGT because of the early promise of treating or preventing diseases effectively and safely by this new technology. Although the theoretical advantages of HGT are undisputable, so far HGT has not delivered the promised results: convincing clinical efficacy could not be demonstrated yet in most of the trials conducted so far, while safety concerns were raised recently as the consequence of the "Gelsinger Case" in Philadelphia. This situation resulted from the by now well-recognized disparity between theory and practice. In other words, the existing technologies could not meet the practical needs of clinically successful HGT so far. However, over the past years, significant progress was made in various enabling technologies, in the molecular understanding of diseases and the manufacturing of vectors. HGT is a complex process, involving multiple steps in the human body (delivery to organs, tissue targeting, cellular trafficking, regulation of gene expression level and duration, biological activity of therapeutic protein, safety of the vector and gene product, to name just a few) most of which are not completely understood. The prerequisite of successful HGT include therapeutically suitable genes (with a proven role in pathophysiology of the disease), appropriate gene delivery systems (e.g., viral and non-viral vectors), proof of principle of efficacy and safety in appropriate preclinical models and suitable manufacturing and analytical processes to provide well-defined HGT products for clinical investigations. The most promising areas for gene therapy today are hemophilias, for monogenic diseases, and cardiovascular

  14. Gene therapy for childhood immunological diseases.

    PubMed

    Kohn, D B

    2008-01-01

    Gene therapy using autologous hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) that are corrected with the normal gene may have a beneficial effect on blood cell production or function, without the immunologic complications of allogeneic HSC transplantation. Childhood immunological diseases are highly favorable candidates for responses to gene therapy using HSC. Hemoglobinopathies, lysosomal and metabolic disorders and defects of hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells should also be ameliorated by gene therapy using autologous HSC. At present, gene therapy has been beneficial for patients with XSCID, ADA-deficient SCID and chronic granulomatous disease. The principle that partial marrow conditioning increases engraftment of gene-corrected HSC has been demonstrated. Clinical trials are being developed in Europe and the United States to treat several other genetic blood cell disorders. This progress is tempered by the serious complication observed in XSCID patients developing T lymphoproliferative disease. New methods for gene transfer (lentiviral and foamy viral vectors, semi-viral systems and gene correction) may retain or further increase the efficacy and decrease the risks from gene therapy using HSC. Ultimately, the relative benefits and risks of autologous gene therapy will be weighed against other available options (for example, allogeneic HSCT) to determine the treatment of choice.

  15. Candidate diseases for prenatal gene therapy.

    PubMed

    David, Anna L; Waddington, Simon N

    2012-01-01

    Prenatal gene therapy aims to deliver genes to cells and tissues early in prenatal life, allowing correction of a genetic defect, before irreparable tissue damage has occurred. In contrast to postnatal gene therapy, prenatal application may target genes to a large population of stem cells, and the smaller fetal size allows a higher vector to target cell ratio to be achieved. Early gestation delivery may allow the development of immune tolerance to the transgenic protein, which would facilitate postnatal repeat vector administration if needed. Moreover, early delivery would avoid anti-vector immune responses which are often acquired in postnatal life. The NIH Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee considered that a candidate disease for prenatal gene therapy should pose serious morbidity and mortality risks to the fetus or neonate, and not have any effective postnatal treatment. Prenatal gene therapy would therefore be appropriate for life-threatening disorders, in which prenatal gene delivery maintains a clear advantage over cell transplantation or postnatal gene therapy. If deemed safer and more efficacious, prenatal gene therapy may be applicable for nonlethal conditions if adult gene transfer is unlikely to be of benefit. Many candidate diseases will be inherited congenital disorders such as thalassaemia or lysosomal storage disorders. However, obstetric conditions such as fetal growth restriction may also be treated using a targeted gene therapy approach. In each disease, the condition must be diagnosed prenatally, either via antenatal screening and prenatal diagnosis, for example, in the case of hemophilias, or by ultrasound assessment of the fetus, for example, congenital diaphragmatic hernia. In this chapter, we describe some examples of the candidate diseases and discuss how a prenatal gene therapy approach might work.

  16. Cystic Fibrosis Gene Therapy in the UK and Elsewhere

    PubMed Central

    Pytel, Kamila M.; Alton, Eric W.F.W.

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene was identified in 1989. This opened the door for the development of cystic fibrosis (CF) gene therapy, which has been actively pursued for the last 20 years. Although 26 clinical trials involving approximately 450 patients have been carried out, the vast majority of these trials were short and included small numbers of patients; they were not designed to assess clinical benefit, but to establish safety and proof-of-concept for gene transfer using molecular end points such as the detection of recombinant mRNA or correction of the ion transport defect. The only currently published trial designed and powered to assess clinical efficacy (defined as improvement in lung function) administered AAV2-CFTR to the lungs of patients with CF. The U.K. Cystic Fibrosis Gene Therapy Consortium completed, in the autumn of 2014, the first nonviral gene therapy trial designed to answer whether repeated nonviral gene transfer (12 doses over 12 months) can lead to clinical benefit. The demonstration that the molecular defect in CFTR can be corrected with small-molecule drugs, and the success of gene therapy in other monogenic diseases, is boosting interest in CF gene therapy. Developments are discussed here. PMID:25838137

  17. Recent advances in fetal gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Buckley, Suzanne M K; Rahim, Ahad A; Chan, Jerry K Y; David, Anna L; Peebles, Donald M; Coutelle, Charles; Waddingtont, Simon N

    2011-04-01

    Over the first decade of this new millennium gene therapy has demonstrated clear clinical benefits in several diseases for which conventional medicine offers no treatment. Clinical trials of gene therapy for single gene disorders have recruited predominantly young patients since older subjects may have suffered irrevocablepathological changes or may not be available because the disease is lethal relatively early in life. The concept of fetal gene therapy is an extension of this principle in that diseases in which irreversible changes occur at or beforebirth can be prevented by gene supplementation or repair in the fetus or associated maternal tissues. This article ccnsiders the enthusiasm and skepticism held for fetal gene therapy and its potential for clinical application. It coversa spectrum of candidate diseases for fetal gene therapy including Pompe disease, Gaucher disease, thalassemia, congenital protein C deficiency and cystic fibrosis. It outlines successful and not-so-successful examples of fetal gene therapy in animal models. Finally the application and potential of fetal gene transfer as a fundamental research tool for developmental biology and generation of somatic transgenic animals is surveyed.

  18. Gene therapy for sickle cell disease.

    PubMed

    Olowoyeye, Abiola; Okwundu, Charles I

    2016-11-14

    Sickle cell disease encompasses a group of genetic disorders characterized by the presence of at least one hemoglobin S (Hb S) allele, and a second abnormal allele that could allow abnormal hemoglobin polymerisation leading to a symptomatic disorder.Autosomal recessive disorders (such as sickle cell disease) are good candidates for gene therapy because a normal phenotype can be restored in diseased cells with only a single normal copy of the mutant gene. This is an update of a previously published Cochrane Review. The objectives of this review are:to determine whether gene therapy can improve survival and prevent symptoms and complications associated with sickle cell disease;to examine the risks of gene therapy against the potential long-term gain for people with sickle cell disease. We searched the Cochrane Cystic Fibrosis and Genetic Disorders Group Haemoglobinopathies Trials Register, which comprises of references identified from comprehensive electronic database searches and searching relevant journals and abstract books of conference proceedings.Date of the most recent search of the Group's Haemoglobinopathies Trials Register: 15 August 2016. All randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials (including any relevant phase 1, 2 or 3 trials) of gene therapy for all individuals with sickle cell disease, regardless of age or setting. No trials of gene therapy for sickle cell disease were found. No trials of gene therapy for sickle cell disease were reported. No randomised or quasi-randomised clinical trials of gene therapy for sickle cell disease were reported. Thus, no objective conclusions or recommendations in practice can be made on gene therapy for sickle cell disease. This systematic review has identified the need for well-designed, randomised controlled trials to assess the benefits and risks of gene therapy for sickle cell disease.

  19. [Gene therapy of neurological diseases].

    PubMed

    Kahn, A; Haase, G; Akli, S; Guidotti, J E

    1996-01-01

    transgenes transferred through adenoviral vectors, we have constructed vectors with cDNAs or genes for various neutrophic factors: CNTF, NT3, BDNF and GDNF. These vectors were biologically active on target cells, ex vivo and in vivo. In the pmn mouse model of progressive motor neuronal degeneration, some of these vectors, alone or combined, allowed for prolongation of life of homozygous animals by more than two fold, and for decrease in the demyelination of phrenic nerve axons. Finally, we have also constructed an adenoviral vector carrying the alpha-hexosaminidase cDNA, encoding the enzyme subunit deficient in Tay Sachs patients. This vector permitted to normalize ganglioside metabolism in Tay Sachs fibroblasts and is currently tested in knock out mice deficient in hexosaminidase A. In spite of all these encouraging results, we are nevertheless aware that progress in vector design and delivery strategies will be needed before gene therapy can become a realistic therapeutical strategy in humans.

  20. Regulation of UDP glucuronosyltransferase genes.

    PubMed

    Mackenzie, P I; Gregory, P A; Gardner-Stephen, D A; Lewinsky, R H; Jorgensen, B R; Nishiyama, T; Xie, Wen; Radominska-Pandya, A

    2003-06-01

    The UDP glucuronosyltransferase (UGT) content of cells and tissues is a major determinant of our response to those chemicals that are primarily eliminated by conjugation with glucuronic acid. There are marked interindividual differences in the content of UGTs in the liver and other organs. The mechanisms that lead to these differences are unknown but are most likely the result of differential UGT gene expression. Several transcription factors involved in the regulation of UGT genes have been identified. These include factors such as Hepatocyte Nuclear Factor 1, CAAT-Enhancer Binding Protein, Octamer transcription Factor 1 and Pbx2, which appear to control the constitutive levels of UGTs in tissues and organs. In addition, UGT gene expression is also modulated by hormones, drugs and other foreign chemicals through the action of proteins that bind and/or sense the presence of these chemicals. These proteins include the Ah receptor, members of the nuclear receptor superfamily, such as CAR and PXR and transcription factors that respond to stress.

  1. Lentiviral Vectors and Cystic Fibrosis Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Castellani, Stefano; Conese, Massimo

    2010-01-01

    Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a chronic autosomic recessive syndrome, caused by mutations in the CF Transmembrane Conductance Regulator (CFTR) gene, a chloride channel expressed on the apical side of the airway epithelial cells. The lack of CFTR activity brings a dysregulated exchange of ions and water through the airway epithelium, one of the main aspects of CF lung disease pathophysiology. Lentiviral (LV) vectors, of the Retroviridae family, show interesting properties for CF gene therapy, since they integrate into the host genome and allow long-lasting gene expression. Proof-of-principle that LV vectors can transduce the airway epithelium and correct the basic electrophysiological defect in CF mice has been given. Initial data also demonstrate that LV vectors can be repeatedly administered to the lung and do not give rise to a gross inflammatory process, although they can elicit a T cell-mediated response to the transgene. Future studies will clarify the efficacy and safety profile of LV vectors in new complex animal models with CF, such as ferrets and pigs. PMID:21994643

  2. Gene therapy for B cell lymphomas.

    PubMed

    Fielding, A K; Russell, S J

    1997-01-01

    The use of genes or genetically modified cells for therapeutic benefit is likely to have a significant therapeutic role for patients with B cell lymphomas in the future. To date, most gene therapy strategies applicable to the therapy of these diseases have not reached the point of clinical study. Adoptive immunotherapy using donor leucocyte infusion to treat aggressive B cell neoplasms in immunosuppressed patients has, however, shown great promise clinically, and studies of idiotypic vaccination in patients with low grade B cell neoplasms are also under way. Results from in vitro and animal studies continue to suggest that it may become possible to use the immune system for therapeutic benefit, and many current basic research strategies in the gene therapy of B cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma are based on immune modulation of T cells or tumour cells themselves. Other major approaches to gene therapy for B cell malignancies include the introduction of directly toxic or "suicide genes" into B cells or the chemoprotection of haemopoietic stem cells by the introduction of drug resistance genes. All of these approaches require efficient and accurate gene transfer as well as correct expression of the gene product within the target cell. Although some way from therapeutic use, specific targeting of gene delivery is an area of active investigation and will be of value in many of the gene therapy strategies applicable to B cell lymphomas.

  3. Treatment of ocular disorders by gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Solinís, M Ángeles; del Pozo-Rodríguez, Ana; Apaolaza, Paola S; Rodríguez-Gascón, Alicia

    2015-09-01

    Gene therapy to treat ocular disorders is still starting, and current therapies are primarily experimental, with most human clinical trials still in research state, although beginning to show encouraging results. Currently 33 clinical trials have been approved, are in progress, or have been completed. The most promising results have been obtained in clinical trials of ocular gene therapy for Leber Congenital Amaurosis, which have prompted the study of several ocular diseases that are good candidates to be treated with gene therapy: glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, retinitis pigmentosa, or choroideremia. The success of gene therapy relies on the efficient delivery of the genetic material to target cells, achieving optimum long-term gene expression. Although viral vectors have been widely used, their potential risk associated mainly with immunogenicity and mutagenesis has promoted the design of non-viral vectors. In this review, the main administration routes and the most studied delivery systems, viral and non-viral, for ocular gene therapy are presented. The primary ocular disease candidates to be treated with gene therapy have been also reviewed, including the genetic basis and the most relevant preclinical and clinical studies.

  4. Vectors--shuttle vehicles for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Wilson, J M

    1997-01-01

    Gene therapy is being considered for the treatment of various inherited and acquired disorders. The basic premise of this new therapeutic modality is manipulation of gene expression towards a therapeutic end. The early development of the field focused on a technique called ex vivo gene therapy in which autologous cells are genetically manipulated in culture prior to transplantation. Recent advances have stimulated the development of in vivo gene therapy approaches based on direct delivery of the therapeutic gene to cells in vivo. The rate-limiting technologies of gene therapy are the gene delivery vehicles, called vectors, used to accomplish gene transfer. The most efficient vectors are based on recombinant versions of viruses with retroviral vectors serving as prototypes. This viral vector system has been exploited in ex vivo approaches of gene therapy in which cultured, dividing cells are transduced with the recombinant virus resulting in integration of the proviral DNA into the chromosomal DNA of the recipient cell. The use of retroviral vectors in gene therapy has been restricted to ex vivo approaches because of difficulties in purifying the virion and the requirement that the target cell is dividing at the time of transduction. More recently, vectors based on adenoviruses have been developed for in vivo gene therapy. These viruses can be grown in large quantities and highly purified. Importantly, they efficiently transduce the recombinant genome into non-dividing cells. Applications include in vivo gene delivery to a variety of targets such as muscle, lung, liver and the central nervous system. Clinical trials of in vivo delivery with adenoviruses have been undertaken for the treatment of cystic fibrosis.

  5. Noncoding RNA for Cancer Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Xiaomin; Zhang, Dongmei; Xiong, Minmin; Zhang, Lin

    Gene therapy is a prospective strategy to modulate gene expression level in specific cells to treat human inherited diseases, cancers, and acquired disorders. A subset of noncoding RNAs, microRNAs (miRNAs) and small interference RNAs (siRNAs), compose an important class of widely used effectors for gene therapy, especially in cancer treatment. Functioning through the RNA interference (RNAi) mechanism, miRNA and siRNA show potent ability in silencing oncogenic factors for cancer gene therapy. For a better understanding of this field, we reviewed the mechanism and biological function, the principles of design and synthesis, and the delivery strategies of noncoding RNAs with clinical potentials in cancer gene therapy.

  6. Emotion Regulation in Schema Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Fassbinder, Eva; Schweiger, Ulrich; Martius, Desiree; Brand-de Wilde, Odette; Arntz, Arnoud

    2016-01-01

    Schema therapy (ST) and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) have both shown to be effective treatment methods especially for borderline personality disorder. Both, ST and DBT, have their roots in cognitive behavioral therapy and aim at helping patient to deal with emotional dysregulation. However, there are major differences in the terminology, explanatory models and techniques used in the both methods. This article gives an overview of the major therapeutic techniques used in ST and DBT with respect to emotion regulation and systematically puts them in the context of James Gross' process model of emotion regulation. Similarities and differences of the two methods are highlighted and illustrated with a case example. A core difference of the two approaches is that DBT directly focusses on the acquisition of emotion regulation skills, whereas ST does seldom address emotion regulation directly. All DBT-modules (mindfulness, distress tolerance, emotion regulation, interpersonal effectiveness) are intended to improve emotion regulation skills and patients are encouraged to train these skills on a regular basis. DBT assumes that improved skills and skills use will result in better emotion regulation. In ST problems in emotion regulation are seen as a consequence of adverse early experiences (e.g., lack of safe attachment, childhood abuse or emotional neglect). These negative experiences have led to unprocessed psychological traumas and fear of emotions and result in attempts to avoid emotions and dysfunctional meta-cognitive schemas about the meaning of emotions. ST assumes that when these underlying problems are addressed, emotion regulation improves. Major ST techniques for trauma processing, emotional avoidance and dysregulation are limited reparenting, empathic confrontation and experiential techniques like chair dialogs and imagery rescripting. PMID:27683567

  7. Autonomic Regulation Therapy in Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    Buckley, Una; Shivkumar, Kalyanam; Ardell, Jeffrey L.

    2015-01-01

    Autonomic Regulation Therapy (ART) is a rapidly emerging therapy in the management of congestive heart failure secondary to systolic dysfunction. Modulation of the cardiac neuronal hierarchy can be achieved with bioelectronics modulation of the spinal cord, cervical vagus, baroreceptor, or renal nerve ablation. This review will discuss relevant preclinical and clinical research in ART for systolic heart failure. Understanding mechanistically what is being stimulated within the autonomic nervous system by such device-based therapy and how the system reacts to such stimuli is essential for optimizing stimulation parameters and for the future development of effective ART. PMID:26054327

  8. In Vivo Noninvasive Imaging for Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    Gene therapy is reaching a stage where some clinical benefits have been demonstrated on patients involved in phase I/II clinical trials. However, in many cases, the clinical benefit is hardly measurable and progress in the improvement of gene therapy formulations is hampered by the lack of objective clinical endpoints to measure transgene delivery and to quantitate transgene expression. However, these endpoints rely almost exclusively on the analysis of biopsies by molecular and histopathological methods. These methods provide only a limited picture of the situation. Therefore, there is a need for a technology that would allow precise, spacio-temporal measurement of gene expression on a whole body scale upon administration of the gene delivery vector. In the field of gene therapy, a considerable effort is being invested in the development of noninvasive imaging of gene expression and this review presents the various strategies currently being developed. PMID:12721514

  9. Gene Therapy Techniques for Peripheral Arterial Disease

    SciTech Connect

    Manninen, Hannu I.; Maekinen, Kimmo

    2002-03-15

    Somatic gene therapy is the introduction of new genetic material into selective somatic cells with resulting therapeutic benefits. Vascular wall and, subsequently, cardiovascular diseases have become an interesting target for gene therapy studies.Arteries are an attractive target for gene therapy since vascular interventions, both open surgical and endovascular, are well suited for minimally invasive, easily monitored gene delivery. Promising therapeutic effects have been obtained in animal models in preventing post-angioplasty restenosis and vein graft thickening, as well as increasing blood flow and collateral development in ischemic limbs.First clinical trials suggest a beneficial effect of vascular endothelial growth factor in achieving therapeutic angiogenesis in chronic limb ischemia and the efficacy of decoy oligonucleotides to prevent infrainguinal vein graft stenosis. However, further studies are mandatory to clarify the safety issues, to develop better gene delivery vectors and delivery catheters, to improve transgene expression, as well as to find the most effective and safe treatment genes.

  10. [Gene therapy: current status and promise].

    PubMed

    Kaneda, Y

    2001-04-01

    As of summer 2000, more than 400 protocols developed for human gene therapy have been reported, and there have been recent successful applications in some diseases such as arteriosclerosis obliterance, immunodeficiency X-1 (SCID-X1) and hemophilia B. However, complications have also occurred. Successful gene therapy is dependent on the development of an effective gene delivery system. One approach is development of chimeric vector systems that combine at least two different vector systems. However, a perfect vector system has not yet been constructed. Difficulties of in vivo gene transfer appear to result from resistance of living cells to invasion by foreign materials and from interference of cellular functions. We should reevaluate what barriers in tissues affect in vivo gene transfection and how to solve these problems for gene therapy. Moreover, in Japan, there should be more extensive preparation of social systems to promote clinical trials based on basic research.

  11. Gene regulation by noncoding RNAs

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Veena S.; Zhou, Rui; Rana, Tariq M.

    2015-01-01

    The past two decades have seen an explosion in research on noncoding RNAs and their physiological and pathological functions. Several classes of small (20–30 nucleotides) and long (>200 nucleotides) noncoding RNAs have been firmly established as key regulators of gene expression in myriad processes ranging from embryonic development to innate immunity. In this review, we focus on our current understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying the biogenesis and function of small interfering RNAs (siRNAs), microRNAs (miRNAs), and Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs). In addition, we briefly review the relevance of small and long noncoding RNAs to human physiology and pathology and their potential to be exploited as therapeutic agents. PMID:24164576

  12. Dynamics of bacterial gene regulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Narang, Atul

    2009-03-01

    The phenomenon of diauxic growth is a classical problem of bacterial gene regulation. The most well studied example of this phenomenon is the glucose-lactose diauxie, which occurs because the expression of the lac operon is strongly repressed in the presence of glucose. This repression is often explained by appealing to molecular mechanisms such as cAMP activation and inducer exclusion. I will begin by analyzing data showing that these molecular mechanisms cannot explain the strong lac repression because they exert a relatively weak effect. I will then present a minimal model accounting only for enzyme induction and dilution, which yields strong repression despite the absence of catabolite repression and inducer exclusion. The model also explains the growth patterns observed in batch and continuous cultures of various bacterial strains and substrate mixtures. The talk will conclude with a discussion of the experimental evidence regarding positive feedback, the key component of the minimal model.

  13. Biodegradable nanoparticles for gene therapy technology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hosseinkhani, Hossein; He, Wen-Jie; Chiang, Chiao-Hsi; Hong, Po-Da; Yu, Dah-Shyong; Domb, Abraham J.; Ou, Keng-Liang

    2013-07-01

    Rapid propagations in materials technology together with biology have initiated great hopes in the possibility of treating many diseases by gene therapy technology. Viral and non-viral gene carriers are currently applied for gene delivery. Non-viral technology is safe and effective for the delivery of genetic materials to cells and tissues. Non-viral systems are based on plasmid expression containing a gene encoding a therapeutic protein and synthetic biodegradable nanoparticles as a safe carrier of gene. Biodegradable nanoparticles have shown great interest in drug and gene delivery systems as they are easy to be synthesized and have no side effect in cells and tissues. This review provides a critical view of applications of biodegradable nanoparticles on gene therapy technology to enhance the localization of in vitro and in vivo and improve the function of administered genes.

  14. State-of-the-art human gene therapy: part II. Gene therapy strategies and clinical applications.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dan; Gao, Guangping

    2014-09-01

    In Part I of this Review (Wang and Gao, 2014), we introduced recent advances in gene delivery technologies and explained how they have powered some of the current human gene therapy applications. In Part II, we expand the discussion on gene therapy applications, focusing on some of the most exciting clinical uses. To help readers to grasp the essence and to better organize the diverse applications, we categorize them under four gene therapy strategies: (1) gene replacement therapy for monogenic diseases, (2) gene addition for complex disorders and infectious diseases, (3) gene expression alteration targeting RNA, and (4) gene editing to introduce targeted changes in host genome. Human gene therapy started with the simple idea that replacing a faulty gene with a functional copy can cure a disease. It has been a long and bumpy road to finally translate this seemingly straightforward concept into reality. As many disease mechanisms unraveled, gene therapists have employed a gene addition strategy backed by a deep knowledge of what goes wrong in diseases and how to harness host cellular machinery to battle against diseases. Breakthroughs in other biotechnologies, such as RNA interference and genome editing by chimeric nucleases, have the potential to be integrated into gene therapy. Although clinical trials utilizing these new technologies are currently sparse, these innovations are expected to greatly broaden the scope of gene therapy in the near future.

  15. STATE-OF-THE-ART HUMAN GENE THERAPY: PART II. GENE THERAPY STRATEGIES AND APPLICATIONS

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Dan; Gao, Guangping

    2015-01-01

    In Part I of this Review, we introduced recent advances in gene delivery technologies and explained how they have powered some of the current human gene therapy applications. In Part II, we expand the discussion on gene therapy applications, focusing on some of the most exciting clinical uses. To help readers to grasp the essence and to better organize the diverse applications, we categorize them under four gene therapy strategies: (1) gene replacement therapy for monogenic diseases, (2) gene addition for complex disorders and infectious diseases, (3) gene expression alteration targeting RNA, and (4) gene editing to introduce targeted changes in host genome. Human gene therapy started with the simple idea that replacing a faulty gene with a functional copy can cure a disease. It has been a long and bumpy road to finally translate this seemingly straightforward concept into reality. As many disease mechanisms unraveled, gene therapists have employed a gene addition strategy backed by a deep knowledge of what goes wrong in diseases and how to harness host cellular machinery to battle against diseases. Breakthroughs in other biotechnologies, such as RNA interference and genome editing by chimeric nucleases, have the potential to be integrated into gene therapy. Although clinical trials utilizing these new technologies are currently sparse, these innovations are expected to greatly broaden the scope of gene therapy in the near future. PMID:25227756

  16. Cancer suicide gene therapy: a patent review.

    PubMed

    Navarro, Saúl Abenhamar; Carrillo, Esmeralda; Griñán-Lisón, Carmen; Martín, Ana; Perán, Macarena; Marchal, Juan Antonio; Boulaiz, Houria

    2016-09-01

    Cancer is considered the second leading cause of death worldwide despite the progress made in early detection and advances in classical therapies. Advancing in the fight against cancer requires the development of novel strategies, and the suicide gene transfer to tumor cells is providing new possibilities for cancer therapy. In this manuscript, authors present an overview of suicide gene systems and the latest innovations done to enhance cancer suicide gene therapy strategies by i) improving vectors for targeted gene delivery using tissue specific promoter and receptors; ii) modification of the tropism; and iii) combining suicide genes and/or classical therapies for cancer. Finally, the authors highlight the main challenges to be addressed in the future. Even if many efforts are needed for suicide gene therapy to be a real alternative for cancer treatment, we believe that the significant progress made in the knowledge of cancer biology and characterization of cancer stem cells accompanied by the development of novel targeted vectors will enhance the effectiveness of this type of therapeutic strategy. Moreover, combined with current treatments, suicide gene therapy will improve the clinical outcome of patients with cancer in the future.

  17. Targeted Gene Therapies: Tools, Applications, Optimization

    PubMed Central

    Humbert, Olivier; Davis, Luther; Maizels, Nancy

    2012-01-01

    Many devastating human diseases are caused by mutations in a single gene that prevent a somatic cell from carrying out its essential functions, or by genetic changes acquired as a result of infectious disease or in the course of cell transformation. Targeted gene therapies have emerged as potential strategies for treatment of such diseases. These therapies depend upon rare-cutting endonucleases to cleave at specific sites in or near disease genes. Targeted gene correction provides a template for homology-directed repair, enabling the cell's own repair pathways to erase the mutation and replace it with the correct sequence. Targeted gene disruption ablates the disease gene, disabling its function. Gene targeting can also promote other kinds of genome engineering, including mutation, insertion, or gene deletion. Targeted gene therapies present significant advantages compared to approaches to gene therapy that depend upon delivery of stably expressing transgenes. Recent progress has been fueled by advances in nuclease discovery and design, and by new strategies that maximize efficiency of targeting and minimize off-target damage. Future progress will build on deeper mechanistic understanding of critical factors and pathways. PMID:22530743

  18. Gene Therapy for Diseases and Genetic Disorders

    MedlinePlus

    ... notable advancements are the following: Gene Therapy for Genetic Disorders Severe Combined Immune Deficiency (ADA-SCID) ADA- ... in preclinical animal models of this disease. Other genetic disorders After many years of laboratory and preclinical ...

  19. Gene Therapy: A Paradigm Shift in Dentistry

    PubMed Central

    Siddique, Nida; Raza, Hira; Ahmed, Sehrish; Khurshid, Zohaib; Zafar, Muhammad Sohail

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy holds a promising future for bridging the gap between the disciplines of medicine and clinical dentistry. The dynamic treatment approaches of gene therapy have been advancing by leaps and bounds. They are transforming the conventional approaches into more precise and preventive ones that may limit the need of using drugs and surgery. The oral cavity is one of the most accessible areas for the clinical applications of gene therapy for various oral tissues. The idea of genetic engineering has become more exciting due to its advantages over other treatment modalities. For instance, the body is neither subjected to an invasive surgery nor deep wounds, nor is it susceptible to systemic effects of drugs. The aim of this article is to review the gene therapy applications in the field of dentistry. In addition, therapeutic benefits in terms of treatment of diseases, minimal invasion and maximum outcomes have been discussed. PMID:27834914

  20. Gene Therapy: A Paradigm Shift in Dentistry.

    PubMed

    Siddique, Nida; Raza, Hira; Ahmed, Sehrish; Khurshid, Zohaib; Zafar, Muhammad Sohail

    2016-11-10

    Gene therapy holds a promising future for bridging the gap between the disciplines of medicine and clinical dentistry. The dynamic treatment approaches of gene therapy have been advancing by leaps and bounds. They are transforming the conventional approaches into more precise and preventive ones that may limit the need of using drugs and surgery. The oral cavity is one of the most accessible areas for the clinical applications of gene therapy for various oral tissues. The idea of genetic engineering has become more exciting due to its advantages over other treatment modalities. For instance, the body is neither subjected to an invasive surgery nor deep wounds, nor is it susceptible to systemic effects of drugs. The aim of this article is to review the gene therapy applications in the field of dentistry. In addition, therapeutic benefits in terms of treatment of diseases, minimal invasion and maximum outcomes have been discussed.

  1. Gene Therapy for Post-Traumatic Osteoarthritis

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    chronic, degenerative, often crippling disease that primarily affects large weight bearing joints. There is strong evidence that interleukin - 1 (IL- 1 ) is a...Osteoarthritis (OA) Gene Therapy Equine Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Interleukin - 1 Receptor Antagonist (IL-1Ra) Post-traumatic OA (PTOA) Self...AD______________ AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-14- 1 -0498 TITLE: Gene Therapy for Post-Traumatic Osteoarthritis PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Steven C

  2. Magnetic nanoparticles: Applications in gene delivery and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Majidi, Sima; Zeinali Sehrig, Fatemeh; Samiei, Mohammad; Milani, Morteza; Abbasi, Elham; Dadashzadeh, Kianoosh; Akbarzadeh, Abolfazl

    2016-06-01

    Gene therapy is defined as the direct transfer of genetic material to tissues or cells for the treatment of inherited disorders and acquired diseases. For gene delivery, magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) are typically combined with a delivery platform to encapsulate the gene, and promote cell uptake. Delivery technologies that have been used with MNPs contain polymeric, viral, as well as non-viral platforms. In this review, we focus on targeted gene delivery using MNPs.

  3. Gene therapy for inherited retinal degenerations.

    PubMed

    Dalkara, Deniz; Sahel, José-Alain

    2014-03-01

    Gene therapy is quickly becoming a reality applicable in the clinic for inherited retinal diseases. Progress over the past decade has moved proof-of-concept gene therapies from bench to bedside. The remarkable success in safety and efficacy, in the phase I/II clinical trials for the form of the severe childhood-onset blindness, Leber's Congenital Amaurosis (LCA) type II (due to mutations in the RPE65 gene) generated significant interest and opened up possibilities for a new era of retinal gene therapies. Success in these clinical trials was due to combining the favorable features of both the retina as a target organ and adeno-associated virus (AAV) as a vector. The retina offers several advantages for gene therapy approaches. It is an anatomically defined structure that is readily accessible for therapy and has some degree of immune privilege, making it suitable for application of viral vectors. AAV, on the other hand, is a non-pathogenic helper dependent virus that has little immunogenicity. This viral vector transduces quiescent cells efficiently and thanks to its small size diffuses well in the interneural matrix, making it suitable for applications in neural tissue. Building on this initial clinical success with LCA II, we have now many opportunities to extend this proof-of-concept to other retinal diseases. This article will discuss what are some of the most imminent targets for such therapies and what are the challenges that we face in moving these therapies to the clinic.

  4. Human Studies of Angiogenic Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Gupta, Rajesh; Tongers, Jörn; Losordo, Douglas W.

    2009-01-01

    Despite significant advances in medical, interventional, and surgical therapy for coronary and peripheral arterial disease, the burden of these illnesses remains high. To address this unmet need, the science of therapeutic angiogenesis has been evolving for almost two decades. Early pre-clinical studies and phase I clinical trials achieved promising results with growth factors administered as recombinant proteins or as single-agent gene therapies, and data accumulated through 10 years of clinical trials indicate that gene therapy has an acceptable safety profile. However, more rigorous phase II and phase III clinical trials have failed to unequivocally demonstrate that angiogenic agents are beneficial under the conditions and in the patients studied to date. Investigators have worked to understand the biology of the vascular system and to incorporate their findings into new treatments for patients with ischemic disease. Recent gene- and cell-therapy trials have demonstrated the bioactivity of several new agents and treatment strategies. Collectively, these observations have renewed interest in the mechanisms of angiogenesis and deepened our understanding of the complexity of vascular regeneration. Gene therapy that incorporates multiple growth factors, approaches that combine cell and gene therapy, and the administration of "master switch" agents that activate numerous downstream pathways are among the credible and plausible steps forward. In this review, we will examine the clinical development of angiogenic therapy, summarize several of the lessons learned during the conduct of these trials, and suggest how this prior experience may guide the conduct of future preclinical investigations and clinical trials. PMID:19815827

  5. Regulation of the genes involved in nitrification.

    SciTech Connect

    Arp, D.J.; Sayavedra-Soto, L.A.

    2003-08-14

    OAK-B135 This project focuses on the characterization of the regulation of the genes involved in nitrification in the bacterium Nitrosomonas europaea. The key genes in the nitrification pathway, amo and hao, are present in multiple copies in the genome. The promoters for these genes were identified and characterized. It was shown that there were some differences in the transcriptional regulation of the copies of these genes.

  6. Gene delivery to the lungs: pulmonary gene therapy for cystic fibrosis.

    PubMed

    Villate-Beitia, Ilia; Zarate, Jon; Puras, Gustavo; Pedraz, José Luis

    2017-07-01

    Cystic fibrosis (CF) is a monogenic autosomal recessive disorder where the defective gene, the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR), is well identified. Moreover, the respiratory tract can be targeted through noninvasive aerosolized formulations for inhalation. Therefore, gene therapy is considered a plausible strategy to address this disease. Conventional gene therapy strategies rely on the addition of a correct copy of the CFTR gene into affected cells in order to restore the channel activity. In recent years, genome correction strategies have emerged, such as zinc-finger nucleases, transcription activator-like effector nucleases and clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats associated to Cas9 nucleases. These gene editing tools aim to repair the mutated gene at its original genomic locus with high specificity. Besides, the success of gene therapy critically depends on the nucleic acids carriers. To date, several clinical studies have been carried out to add corrected copies of the CFTR gene into target cells using viral and non-viral vectors, some of them with encouraging results. Regarding genome editing systems, preliminary in vitro studies have been performed in order to repair the CFTR gene. In this review, after briefly introducing the basis of CF, we discuss the up-to-date gene therapy strategies to address the disease. The review focuses on the main factors to take into consideration when developing gene delivery strategies, such as the design of vectors and plasmid DNA, in vitro/in vivo tests, translation to human use, administration methods, manufacturing conditions and regulatory issues.

  7. Cardiovascular gene therapy for myocardial infarction

    PubMed Central

    Scimia, Maria C; Gumpert, Anna M; Koch, Walter J

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Cardiovascular gene therapy is the third most popular application for gene therapy, representing 8.4% of all gene therapy trials as reported in 2012 estimates. Gene therapy in cardiovascular disease is aiming to treat heart failure from ischemic and non-ischemic causes, peripheral artery disease, venous ulcer, pulmonary hypertension, atherosclerosis and monogenic diseases, such as Fabry disease. Areas covered In this review, we will focus on elucidating current molecular targets for the treatment of ventricular dysfunction following myocardial infarction (MI). In particular, we will focus on the treatment of i) the clinical consequences of it, such as heart failure and residual myocardial ischemia and ii) etiological causes of MI (coronary vessels atherosclerosis, bypass venous graft disease, in-stent restenosis). Expert opinion We summarise the scheme of the review and the molecular targets either already at the gene therapy clinical trial phase or in the pipeline. These targets will be discussed below. Following this, we will focus on what we believe are the 4 prerequisites of success of any gene target therapy: safety, expression, specificity and efficacy (SESE). PMID:24328708

  8. Strategies in Gene Therapy for Glioblastoma

    PubMed Central

    Kwiatkowska, Aneta; Nandhu, Mohan S.; Behera, Prajna; Chiocca, E. Antonio; Viapiano, Mariano S.

    2013-01-01

    Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive form of brain cancer, with a dismal prognosis and extremely low percentage of survivors. Novel therapies are in dire need to improve the clinical management of these tumors and extend patient survival. Genetic therapies for GBM have been postulated and attempted for the past twenty years, with variable degrees of success in pre-clinical models and clinical trials. Here we review the most common approaches to treat GBM by gene therapy, including strategies to deliver tumor-suppressor genes, suicide genes, immunomodulatory cytokines to improve immune response, and conditionally-replicating oncolytic viruses. The review focuses on the strategies used for gene delivery, including the most common and widely used vehicles (i.e., replicating and non-replicating viruses) as well as novel therapeutic approaches such as stem cell-mediated therapy and nanotechnologies used for gene delivery. We present an overview of these strategies, their targets, different advantages, and challenges for success. Finally, we discuss the potential of gene therapy-based strategies to effectively attack such a complex genetic target as GBM, alone or in combination with conventional therapy. PMID:24202446

  9. Gene therapy for primary immunodeficiencies: Part 1.

    PubMed

    Cavazzana-Calvo, Marina; Fischer, Alain; Hacein-Bey-Abina, Salima; Aiuti, Alessandro

    2012-10-01

    Over 60 patients affected by SCID due to IL2RG deficiency (SCID-X1) or adenosine deaminase (ADA)-SCID have received hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy in the past 15 years using gammaretroviral vectors, resulting in immune reconstitution and clinical benefit in the majority of them. However, the occurrence of insertional oncogenesis in the SCID-X1 trials has led to the development of new clinical trials based on integrating vectors with improved safety design as well as investigation on new technologies for highly efficient gene targeting and site-specific gene editing. Here we will present the experience and perspectives of gene therapy for SCID-X1 and ADA-SCID and discuss the pros and cons of gene therapy in comparison to allogeneic transplantation.

  10. Progress in gene therapy for neurological disorders.

    PubMed

    Simonato, Michele; Bennett, Jean; Boulis, Nicholas M; Castro, Maria G; Fink, David J; Goins, William F; Gray, Steven J; Lowenstein, Pedro R; Vandenberghe, Luk H; Wilson, Thomas J; Wolfe, John H; Glorioso, Joseph C

    2013-05-01

    Diseases of the nervous system have devastating effects and are widely distributed among the population, being especially prevalent in the elderly. These diseases are often caused by inherited genetic mutations that result in abnormal nervous system development, neurodegeneration, or impaired neuronal function. Other causes of neurological diseases include genetic and epigenetic changes induced by environmental insults, injury, disease-related events or inflammatory processes. Standard medical and surgical practice has not proved effective in curing or treating these diseases, and appropriate pharmaceuticals do not exist or are insufficient to slow disease progression. Gene therapy is emerging as a powerful approach with potential to treat and even cure some of the most common diseases of the nervous system. Gene therapy for neurological diseases has been made possible through progress in understanding the underlying disease mechanisms, particularly those involving sensory neurons, and also by improvement of gene vector design, therapeutic gene selection, and methods of delivery. Progress in the field has renewed our optimism for gene therapy as a treatment modality that can be used by neurologists, ophthalmologists and neurosurgeons. In this Review, we describe the promising gene therapy strategies that have the potential to treat patients with neurological diseases and discuss prospects for future development of gene therapy.

  11. Progress in gene therapy for neurological disorders

    PubMed Central

    Simonato, Michele; Bennett, Jean; Boulis, Nicholas M.; Castro, Maria G.; Fink, David J.; Goins, William F.; Gray, Steven J.; Lowenstein, Pedro R.; Vandenberghe, Luk H.; Wilson, Thomas J.; Wolfe, John H.; Glorioso, Joseph C.

    2013-01-01

    Diseases of the nervous system have devastating effects and are widely distributed among the population, being especially prevalent in the elderly. These diseases are often caused by inherited genetic mutations that result in abnormal nervous system development, neurodegeneration, or impaired neuronal function. Other causes of neurological diseases include genetic and epigenetic changes induced by environmental insults, injury, disease-related events or inflammatory processes. Standard medical and surgical practice has not proved effective in curing or treating these diseases, and appropriate pharmaceuticals do not exist or are insufficient to slow disease progression. Gene therapy is emerging as a powerful approach with potential to treat and even cure some of the most common diseases of the nervous system. Gene therapy for neurological diseases has been made possible through progress in understanding the underlying disease mechanisms, particularly those involving sensory neurons, and also by improvement of gene vector design, therapeutic gene selection, and methods of delivery. Progress in the field has renewed our optimism for gene therapy as a treatment modality that can be used by neurologists, ophthalmologists and neurosurgeons. In this Review, we describe the promising gene therapy strategies that have the potential to treat patients with neurological diseases and discuss prospects for future development of gene therapy. PMID:23609618

  12. Achieving HIV-1 Control through RNA-Directed Gene Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Klemm, Vera; Mitchell, Jye; Cortez-Jugo, Christina; Cavalieri, Francesca; Symonds, Geoff; Caruso, Frank; Kelleher, Anthony Dominic; Ahlenstiel, Chantelle

    2016-01-01

    HIV-1 infection has been transformed by combined anti-retroviral therapy (ART), changing a universally fatal infection into a controllable infection. However, major obstacles for an HIV-1 cure exist. The HIV latent reservoir, which exists in resting CD4+ T cells, is not impacted by ART, and can reactivate when ART is interrupted or ceased. Additionally, multi-drug resistance can arise. One alternate approach to conventional HIV-1 drug treatment that is being explored involves gene therapies utilizing RNA-directed gene regulation. Commonly known as RNA interference (RNAi), short interfering RNA (siRNA) induce gene silencing in conserved biological pathways, which require a high degree of sequence specificity. This review will provide an overview of the silencing pathways, the current RNAi technologies being developed for HIV-1 gene therapy, current clinical trials, and the challenges faced in progressing these treatments into clinical trials. PMID:27941595

  13. URC Fuzzy Modeling and Simulation of Gene Regulation

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-02

    URC FUZZY MODELING AND SIMULATION OF GENE REGULATION B. A. Sokhansanj1,2 and J. P. Fitch1 1Biology and Biotechnology Research Program, Lawrence...engineering, pharmaceuticals , gene therapy). Diverse modeling approaches have been proposed, in two general categories: modeling a biological pathway as (a) a...systems, we propose that fuzzy logic is a natural language for modeling biology. The Union Rule Configuration (URC) avoids combinatorial explosion in the

  14. Gene therapy: a primer for neurosurgeons.

    PubMed

    Chiocca, E Antonio

    2003-08-01

    Gene therapy involves the transfer of genes into cells with therapeutic intent. Although several methods can accomplish this, vectors based on viruses still provide the most efficient approach. For neurosurgical purposes, preclinical and clinical applications in the areas of glioma therapy, spinal neurosurgery, and neuroprotection for treatment of Parkinson's disease and cerebral ischemia are reviewed. In general, therapies applied in the neurosurgical realm have proven relatively safe, despite occasional, well-publicized cases of morbidity and death in non-neurosurgical trials. However, continued clinical and preclinical research in this area is critical, to fully elucidate potential toxicities and to generate truly effective treatments that can be applied in neurological diseases.

  15. Viral vectors for vascular gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Fischer, Lukas; Preis, Meir; Weisz, Anat; Koren, Belly; Lewis, Basil S; Flugelman, Moshe Y

    2002-01-01

    Vascular gene therapy is the focus of multiple experimental and clinical research efforts. While several genes with therapeutic potential have been identified, the best method of gene delivery is unknown. Viral vectors have the capacity to transfer genes at high efficiency rates. Several viral-based vectors have been used in experimental vascular gene therapy for in vivo and ex vivo gene transfer. Adenoviral-based vectors are being used for the induction of angiogenesis in phase 1 and 2 clinical trials. In the present review, the characteristics of the ‘ideal’ viral vector are discussed and the major types of viral vectors used in vascular gene transfer are reviewed. Basic knowledge of the use of viral vectors for direct in vivo gene transfer (adenoviral-based vectors, etc) and for ex vivo gene transfer (retroviral-based vectors) is provided. New developments in the field of viral vectorology, such as pseudotyping of retroviral vectors and targeting of other viral vectors to a specific cell type, will enhance the more rapid transition of vascular gene therapy from the experimental arena to the clinical setting. PMID:19649233

  16. Gene and Cell Therapy for Heart Failure

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Abstract Cardiac gene and cell therapy have both entered clinical trials aimed at ameliorating ventricular dysfunction in patients with chronic congestive heart failure. The transduction of myocardial cells with viral constructs encoding a specific cardiomyocyte Ca2+ pump in the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR), SRCa2+-ATPase has been shown to correct deficient Ca2+ handling in cardiomyocytes and improvements in contractility in preclinical studies, thus leading to the first clinical trial of gene therapy for heart failure. In cell therapy, it is not clear whether beneficial effects are cell-type specific and how improvements in contractility are brought about. Despite these uncertainties, a number of clinical trials are under way, supported by safety and efficacy data from trials of cell therapy in the setting of myocardial infarction. Safety concerns for gene therapy center on inflammatory and immune responses triggered by viral constructs, and for cell therapy with myoblast cells, the major concern is increased incidence of ventricular arrhythmia after cell transplantation. Principles and mechanisms of action of gene and cell therapy for heart failure are discussed, together with the potential influence of reactive oxygen species on the efficacy of these treatments and the status of myocardial-delivery techniques for viral constructs and cells. Antioxid. Redox Signal. 11, 2025–2042. PMID:19416058

  17. Novel Cell and Gene Therapies for HIV

    PubMed Central

    Hoxie, James A.; June, Carl H.

    2012-01-01

    Highly active antiretroviral therapy dramatically improves survival in HIV-infected patients. However, persistence of HIV in reservoirs has necessitated lifelong treatment that can be complicated by cumulative toxicities, incomplete immune restoration, and the emergence of drug-resistant escape mutants. Cell and gene therapies offer the promise of preventing progressive HIV infection by interfering with HIV replication in the absence of chronic antiviral therapy. Individuals homozygous for a deletion in the CCR5 gene (CCR5Δ32) are largely resistant to infection from R5-topic HIV-1 strains, which are most commonly transmitted. A recent report that an HIV-infected patient with relapsed acute myelogenous leukemia was effectively cured from HIV infection after transplantation of hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSC) from a CCR5Δ32 homozygous donor has generated renewed interest in developing treatment strategies that target viral reservoirs and generate HIV resistance in a patient’s own cells. Although the development of cell-based and gene transfer therapies has been slow, progress in a number of areas is evident. Advances in the fields of gene-targeting strategies, T-cell-based approaches, and HSCs have been encouraging, and a series of ongoing and planned trials to establish proof of concept for strategies that could lead to successful cell and gene therapies for HIV are under way. The eventual goal of these studies is to eliminate latent viral reservoirs and the need for lifelong antiretroviral therapy. PMID:23028130

  18. Human gene therapy and slippery slope arguments.

    PubMed Central

    McGleenan, T

    1995-01-01

    Any suggestion of altering the genetic makeup of human beings through gene therapy is quite likely to provoke a response involving some reference to a 'slippery slope'. In this article the author examines the topography of two different types of slippery slope argument, the logical slippery slope and the rhetorical slippery slope argument. The logical form of the argument suggests that if we permit somatic cell gene therapy then we are committed to accepting germ line gene therapy in the future because there is no logically sustainable distinction between them. The rhetorical form posits that allowing somatic cell therapy now will be taking the first step on a slippery slope which will ultimately lead to the type of genocide perpetrated by the Nazis. The author tests the validity of these lines of argument against the facts of human gene therapy and concludes that because of their dependence on probabilities that cannot be empirically proven they should be largely disregarded in the much more important debate on moral line-drawing in gene therapy. PMID:8778459

  19. [Gene therapy--hopes and fears].

    PubMed

    Pietrzyk, J J

    1998-01-01

    Gene therapy assumes the correction of a genetic defect by the delivery of a correct DNA sequence to the target cells. Depending on the target cells two types gene therapy have been defined: somatic and germinal. By July 1998, 351 protocols of somatic therapy were approved by the Recombinant DNA Advisory Committee. The majority of protocols focus on cancer therapy and monogenic diseases. By now, still there is more unfulfilled expectation than clinically sound achievements, since no effective prevention or successful treatment for genetic diseases or cancer have been developed. Germline genetic modification is considered as the treatment of choice for such a diseases like retinoblastoma. Tay-Sachs, Lesch-Nyhan and metachromatic leuko-dystrophy. This approach which is still illegal or prohibited by rules in many European countries, is gathering more and more advocates. Once we learn how to control gene expression the perspectives for clinical application of gene therapy might be enormous. The safety of genetic modification of gametes or embryonal stem cells remains to be properly addressed and successfully solved. The ethical issues of germinal gene therapy are still the subject of controversial opinions among the scientists, lawyers and philosophers.

  20. Human gene therapy and slippery slope arguments.

    PubMed

    McGleenan, T

    1995-12-01

    Any suggestion of altering the genetic makeup of human beings through gene therapy is quite likely to provoke a response involving some reference to a 'slippery slope'. In this article the author examines the topography of two different types of slippery slope argument, the logical slippery slope and the rhetorical slippery slope argument. The logical form of the argument suggests that if we permit somatic cell gene therapy then we are committed to accepting germ line gene therapy in the future because there is no logically sustainable distinction between them. The rhetorical form posits that allowing somatic cell therapy now will be taking the first step on a slippery slope which will ultimately lead to the type of genocide perpetrated by the Nazis. The author tests the validity of these lines of argument against the facts of human gene therapy and concludes that because of their dependence on probabilities that cannot be empirically proven they should be largely disregarded in the much more important debate on moral line-drawing in gene therapy.

  1. Alphavirus vectors for cancer gene therapy (review).

    PubMed

    Yamanaka, Ryuya

    2004-04-01

    Alphaviruses have several characteristics that make them attractive as gene therapy vectors such as transient and high-level expression of a heterologous gene. Alphavirus vectors, Semliki Forest virus (SFV), Sindbis virus (SIN) and Venezuelan equine encephalitis virus (VEE) have been developed as gene expression vectors. Alphaviruses are positive-strand RNA viruses that can mediate efficient cytoplasmic gene expression in mammalian cells. The alphavirus RNA replication machinery has been engineered for high level heterologous gene expression. Since an RNA virus vector cannot integrate into chromosomal DNA, concerns about cell transformation are reduced. Alphavirus vectors demonstrate promise for the safe tumor-killing and tumor-specific immune responses. Recombinant alphavirus RNA replicons may facilitate gene therapy of cancer.

  2. Gene replacement therapy for hereditary emphysema

    SciTech Connect

    Skolnick, A.

    1989-11-10

    Investigators suggest that human trials of gene therapy to correct a genetic disorder that usually leads to emphysema early in life may be only a few years away. Speaking at the American Lung Association's Second Annual Science Writers' Forum, R. G. Crystal, chief of the Pulmonary Branch of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute offered an explanation of how hereditary emphysema may be more amenable to genetic therapy than other such diseases. In persons who lack a functioning gene for alpha{sup 1}-antitrypsin, a proteolytic enzyme, neutrophil elastase, attacks the walls of the lungs' alveoli, eventually leading to progressive pulmonary function loss. Two animal models of gene insertion are described.

  3. Why commercialization of gene therapy stalled; examining the life cycles of gene therapy technologies.

    PubMed

    Ledley, F D; McNamee, L M; Uzdil, V; Morgan, I W

    2014-02-01

    This report examines the commercialization of gene therapy in the context of innovation theories that posit a relationship between the maturation of a technology through its life cycle and prospects for successful product development. We show that the field of gene therapy has matured steadily since the 1980s, with the congruent accumulation of >35 000 papers, >16 000 US patents, >1800 clinical trials and >$4.3 billion in capital investment in gene therapy companies. Gene therapy technologies comprise a series of dissimilar approaches for gene delivery, each of which has introduced a distinct product architecture. Using bibliometric methods, we quantify the maturation of each technology through a characteristic life cycle S-curve, from a Nascent stage, through a Growing stage of exponential advance, toward an Established stage and projected limit. Capital investment in gene therapy is shown to have occurred predominantly in Nascent stage technologies and to be negatively correlated with maturity. Gene therapy technologies are now achieving the level of maturity that innovation research and biotechnology experience suggest may be requisite for efficient product development. Asynchrony between the maturation of gene therapy technologies and capital investment in development-focused business models may have stalled the commercialization of gene therapy.

  4. The case for intrauterine gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Mattar, Citra N; Waddington, Simon N; Biswas, Arijit; Davidoff, Andrew M; Choolani, Mahesh; Chan, Jerry K Y; Nathwani, Amit C

    2012-10-01

    Single-gene disorders can cause perinatal mortality or severe permanent morbidity. Intrauterine gene therapy seeks to correct the genetic defect in the early stages of pathogenesis through delivery of a vector system expressing the therapeutic transgene to the fetus. Advantages of intrauterine gene therapy include prevention of irreversible organ damage, potentially inducing central tolerance and wider bio-distribution, including the brain after delivery of vector. Already, proof-of-cure has been demonstrated in knockout animal models for several diseases. Long-term outcomes pertaining to efficacy and durability of transgene expression and safety are under investigation in clinically relevant non-human primate models. Bystander effects in the mother from transplacental vector trafficking require further assessment. In this chapter, we discuss the candidate diseases amenable to intrauterine gene therapy, current state-of-the-art evidence, and potential clinical applications.

  5. Update on gene therapy for immunodeficiencies.

    PubMed

    Kohn, Donald B

    2010-05-01

    Primary immune deficiencies (PID) are due to blood cell defects and can be treated with transplantation of normal hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) from another person (allogeneic). Gene therapy in which a patient's autologous HSC are genetically corrected represents an alternative treatment for patients with PID, which could avoid the immunologic risks of allogeneic HSCT and confer similar benefits. Recent clinical trials using gene therapy have led to immune restoration in patients with X-linked severe combined immune deficiency (XSCID), adenosine deaminase (ADA)-deficient SCID and chronic granulomatous disease (CGD). However, severe complications arose in several of the patients in whom the integrated retroviral vectors led to leukoproliferative disorders. New approaches using safer integrating vectors or direct correction of the defective gene underlying the PID are being developed and may lead to safer and effective gene therapy for PID.

  6. What Is Next for Retinal Gene Therapy?

    PubMed

    Vandenberghe, Luk H

    2015-04-15

    The field of gene therapy for retinal blinding disorders is experiencing incredible momentum, justified by hopeful results in early stage clinical trials for inherited retinal degenerations. The premise of the use of the gene as a drug has come a long way, and may have found its niche in the treatment of retinal disease. Indeed, with only limited treatment options available for retinal indications, gene therapy has been proven feasible, safe, and effective and may lead to durable effects following a single injection. Here, we aim at putting into context the promise and potential, the technical, clinical, and economic boundaries limiting its application and development, and speculate on a future in which gene therapy is an integral component of ophthalmic clinical care. Copyright © 2015 Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; all rights reserved.

  7. Targeted polymeric nanoparticles for cancer gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jayoung; Wilson, David R.; Zamboni, Camila G.; Green, Jordan J.

    2015-01-01

    In this article, advances in designing polymeric nanoparticles for targeted cancer gene therapy are reviewed. Characterization and evaluation of biomaterials, targeting ligands, and transcriptional elements are each discussed. Advances in biomaterials have driven improvements to nanoparticle stability and tissue targeting, conjugation of ligands to the surface of polymeric nanoparticles enable binding to specific cancer cells, and the design of transcriptional elements has enabled selective DNA expression specific to the cancer cells. Together, these features have improved the performance of polymeric nanoparticles as targeted non-viral gene delivery vectors to treat cancer. As polymeric nanoparticles can be designed to be biodegradable, non-toxic, and to have reduced immunogenicity and tumorigenicity compared to viral platforms, they have significant potential for clinical use. Results of polymeric gene therapy in clinical trials and future directions for the engineering of nanoparticle systems for targeted cancer gene therapy are also presented. PMID:26061296

  8. Viral gene therapy for breast cancer: progress and challenges.

    PubMed

    Asad, Antonela S; Moreno Ayala, Mariela A; Gottardo, M Florencia; Zuccato, Camila; Nicola Candia, Alejandro Javier; Zanetti, Flavia A; Seilicovich, Adriana; Candolfi, Marianela

    2017-08-01

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women all over the world. Furthermore, up to one third of breast tumors develop metastases that are resistant to standard therapies. Gene therapeutic strategies have been developed in order to specifically target cancer cells either directly or through the stimulation of antitumor immunity. Areas covered: This review describes the therapeutic strategies that are currently under development to treat this disease using engineered viral vectors including: adenovirus, adeno-associated virus, lentivirus, poxvirus, reovirus, baculovirus, herpesvirus and oncolytic viruses. Advantages and disadvantages of these multiple gene therapy platforms are discussed in detail. Expert opinion: Metastatic breast cancer is a perfect candidate for gene therapy approaches due to the presence of several tumor antigens and the aberrant expression of many molecular pathways. Oncolytic vectors are able to attack tumor cells while sparing normal cells and their activity is often enhanced by the administration of chemotherapy. However, more efforts are needed in order to reduce toxicity and to achieve better transduction efficiency. Improved preclinical models and a more critical patient selection for clinical trials, along with advances in gene therapy regulations, will surely facilitate the evolution of gene therapy for the treatment of metastatic breast cancer.

  9. Employment of Salmonella in Cancer Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Lee, Che-Hsin

    2016-01-01

    One of the primary limitations of cancer gene therapy is lack of selectivity of the therapeutic gene to tumor cells. Current efforts are focused on discovering and developing tumor-targeting vectors that selectively target only cancer cells but spare normal cells to improve the therapeutic index. The use of preferentially tumor-targeting bacteria as vectors is one of the innovative approaches for the treatment of cancer. This is based on the observation that some obligate or facultative-anaerobic bacteria are capable of multiplying selectively in tumors and inhibiting their growth. In this study, we exploited attenuated Salmonella as a tumoricidal agent and a vector to deliver genes for tumor-targeted gene therapy. Attenuated Salmonella, carrying a eukaryotic expression plasmid encoding an anti-angiogenic gene, was used to evaluate its' ability for tumor targeting and gene delivery in murine tumor models. We also investigated the use of a polymer to modify or shield Salmonella from the pre-existing immune response in the host in order to improve gene delivery to the tumor. These results suggest that tumor-targeted gene therapy using Salmonella carrying a therapeutic gene, which exerts tumoricidal and anti-angiogenic activities, represents a promising strategy for the treatment of tumors.

  10. Molecular imaging and cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Saadatpour, Z; Bjorklund, G; Chirumbolo, S; Alimohammadi, M; Ehsani, H; Ebrahiminejad, H; Pourghadamyari, H; Baghaei, B; Mirzaei, H R; Sahebkar, A; Mirzaei, H; Keshavarzi, M

    2016-11-18

    Gene therapy is known as one of the most advanced approaches for therapeutic prospects ranging from tackling genetic diseases to combating cancer. In this approach, different viral and nonviral vector systems such as retrovirus, lentivirus, plasmid and transposon have been designed and employed. These vector systems are designed to target different therapeutic genes in various tissues and cells such as tumor cells. Therefore, detection of the vectors containing therapeutic genes and monitoring of response to the treatment are the main issues that are commonly faced by researchers. Imaging techniques have been critical in guiding physicians in the more accurate and precise diagnosis and monitoring of cancer patients in different phases of malignancies. Imaging techniques such as positron emission tomography (PET) and single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) are non-invasive and powerful tools for monitoring of the distribution of transgene expression over time and assessing patients who have received therapeutic genes. Here, we discuss most recent advances in cancer gene therapy and molecular approaches as well as imaging techniques that are utilized to detect cancer gene therapeutics and to monitor the patients' response to these therapies worldwide, particularly in Iranian Academic Medical Centers and Hospitals.Cancer Gene Therapy advance online publication, 18 November 2016; doi:10.1038/cgt.2016.62.

  11. Nonviral gene therapy approaches to hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Gómez-Vargas, Andrew; Hortelano, Gonzalo

    2004-04-01

    The goal of hemophilia gene therapy is to obtain long-term therapeutic levels of factor VIII (FVIII) or factor IX (FIX) without stimulating an immune response against the transgene product or the vector. The success of gene therapy is largely dependent on the development of appropriate gene delivery vectors. Both viral vectors and nonviral vectors have been considered for the development of hemophilia gene therapy. In general, viral vectors are far more efficient than nonviral gene delivery approaches and resulted in long-term therapeutic levels of FVIII or FIX in preclinical animal models. However, there are several reasons why a nonviral treatment would still be desirable, particularly because some viral vectors are associated with inflammatory reactions, that render transgene expression transient, or with an increased risk of insertional oncogenesis when random integrating vectors are used. Nonviral vectors may obviate some of these concerns. Since nonviral vectors are typically assembled in cell-free systems from well-defined components, they have significant manufacturing advantages over viral vectors. The continued development of improved nonviral gene delivery approaches offers new perspectives for gene therapy of chronic diseases including hemophilia.

  12. Emotion Regulation Therapy for Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

    PubMed

    Fresco, David M; Mennin, Douglas S; Heimberg, Richard G; Ritter, Michael

    2013-08-01

    Despite the success of cognitive behavioral therapies (CBT) for emotional disorders, a sizable subgroup of patients with complex clinical presentations, such as patients with generalized anxiety disorder, fails to evidence adequate treatment response. Emotion Regulation Therapy (ERT) integrates facets of traditional and contemporary CBTs, mindfulness, and emotion-focused interventions within a framework that reflects basic and translational findings in affect science. Specifically, ERT is a mechanism-targeted intervention focusing on patterns of motivational dysfunction while cultivating emotion regulation skills. Open and randomized controlled psychotherapy trials have demonstrated considerable preliminary evidence for the utility of this approach as well as for the underlying proposed mechanisms. This article provides an illustration of ERT through the case of "William." In particular, this article includes a case-conceptualization of William from an ERT perspective while describing the flow and progression of the ERT treatment approach.

  13. Emotion Regulation Therapy for Generalized Anxiety Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Fresco, David M.; Mennin, Douglas S.; Heimberg, Richard G.; Ritter, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Despite the success of cognitive behavioral therapies (CBT) for emotional disorders, a sizable subgroup of patients with complex clinical presentations, such as patients with generalized anxiety disorder, fails to evidence adequate treatment response. Emotion Regulation Therapy (ERT) integrates facets of traditional and contemporary CBTs, mindfulness, and emotion-focused interventions within a framework that reflects basic and translational findings in affect science. Specifically, ERT is a mechanism-targeted intervention focusing on patterns of motivational dysfunction while cultivating emotion regulation skills. Open and randomized controlled psychotherapy trials have demonstrated considerable preliminary evidence for the utility of this approach as well as for the underlying proposed mechanisms. This article provides an illustration of ERT through the case of “William.” In particular, this article includes a case-conceptualization of William from an ERT perspective while describing the flow and progression of the ERT treatment approach. PMID:27499606

  14. Current status of haemophilia gene therapy.

    PubMed

    High, K H; Nathwani, A; Spencer, T; Lillicrap, D

    2014-05-01

    After many reports of successful gene therapy studies in small and large animal models of haemophilia, we have, at last, seen the first signs of success in human patients. These very encouraging results have been achieved with the use of adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors in patients with severe haemophilia B. Following on from these initial promising studies, there are now three ongoing trials of AAV-mediated gene transfer in haemophilia B all aiming to express the factor IX gene from the liver. Nevertheless, as discussed in the first section of this article, there are still a number of significant hurdles to overcome if haemophilia B gene therapy is to become more widely available. The second section of this article deals with the challenges relating to factor VIII gene transfer. While the recent results in haemophilia B are extremely encouraging, there is, as yet, no similar data for factor VIII gene therapy. It is widely accepted that this therapeutic target will be significantly more problematic for a variety of reasons including accommodating the larger factor VIII cDNA, achieving adequate levels of transgene expression and preventing the far more frequent complication of antifactor VIII immunity. In the final section of the article, the alternative approach of lentiviral vector-mediated gene transfer is discussed. While AAV-mediated approaches to transgene delivery have led the way in clinical haemophilia gene therapy, there are still a number of potential advantages of using an alternative delivery vehicle including the fact that ex vivo host cell transduction will avoid the likelihood of immune responses to the vector. Overall, these are exciting times for haemophilia gene therapy with the likelihood of further clinical successes in the near future. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. QTLminer: identifying genes regulating quantitative traits.

    PubMed

    Alberts, Rudi; Schughart, Klaus

    2010-10-15

    Quantitative trait locus (QTL) mapping identifies genomic regions that likely contain genes regulating a quantitative trait. However, QTL regions may encompass tens to hundreds of genes. To find the most promising candidate genes that regulate the trait, the biologist typically collects information from multiple resources about the genes in the QTL interval. This process is very laborious and time consuming. QTLminer is a bioinformatics tool that automatically performs QTL region analysis. It is available in GeneNetwork and it integrates information such as gene annotation, gene expression and sequence polymorphisms for all the genes within a given genomic interval. QTLminer substantially speeds up discovery of the most promising candidate genes within a QTL region.

  16. Gene therapy legislation in The Netherlands.

    PubMed

    Bleijs, D A; Haenen, I T W C; Bergmans, J E N

    2007-10-01

    Several regulatory organisations are involved in the assessment of clinical gene therapy trials involving genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in The Netherlands. Medical, ethical and scientific aspects are, for instance, evaluated by the Central Committee on Research Involving Human Subjects (CCMO). The Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM) is the competent authority for the environmental risk assessment according to the deliberate release Directive 2001/18/EC. A Gene Therapy Office has been established in order to streamline the different national review processes and to enable the official procedures to be completed as quickly as possible. Although the Gene Therapy Office improved the application process at the national level, there is a difference of opinion between the EU member states with respect to the EU Directive according to which gene therapy trials are assessed, that urges for harmonisation. This review summarises the gene therapy legislation in The Netherlands and in particular The Netherlands rationale to follow Directive 2001/18/EC for the environmental risk assessment.

  17. Stem cell based cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Cihova, Marina; Altanerova, Veronika; Altaner, Cestmir

    2011-10-03

    The attractiveness of prodrug cancer gene therapy by stem cells targeted to tumors lies in activating the prodrug directly within the tumor mass, thus avoiding systemic toxicity. Suicide gene therapy using genetically engineered mesenchymal stem cells has the advantage of being safe, because prodrug administration not only eliminates tumor cells but consequently kills the more resistant therapeutic stem cells as well. This review provides an explanation of the stem cell-targeted prodrug cancer gene therapy principle, with focus on the choice of prodrug, properties of bone marrow and adipose tissue-derived mesenchymal stem and neural stem cells as well as the mechanisms of their tumor homing ability. Therapeutic achievements of the cytosine deaminase/5-fluorocytosine prodrug system and Herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase/ganciclovir are discussed. In addition, delivery of immunostimulatory cytokines, apoptosis inducing genes, nanoparticles and antiangiogenic proteins by stem cells to tumors and metastases is discussed as a promising approach for antitumor therapy. Combinations of traditional, targeted and stem cell-directed gene therapy could significantly advance the treatment of cancer.

  18. A Comprehensive Review of Retinal Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Boye, Shannon E; Boye, Sanford L; Lewin, Alfred S; Hauswirth, William W

    2013-01-01

    Blindness, although not life threatening, is a debilitating disorder for which few, if any treatments exist. Ocular gene therapies have the potential to profoundly improve the quality of life in patients with inherited retinal disease. As such, tremendous focus has been given to develop such therapies. Several factors make the eye an ideal organ for gene-replacement therapy including its accessibility, immune privilege, small size, compartmentalization, and the existence of a contralateral control. This review will provide a comprehensive summary of (i) existing gene therapy clinical trials for several genetic forms of blindness and (ii) preclinical efficacy and safety studies in a variety of animal models of retinal disease which demonstrate strong potential for clinical application. To be as comprehensive as possible, we include additional proof of concept studies using gene replacement, neurotrophic/neuroprotective, optogenetic, antiangiogenic, or antioxidative stress strategies as well as a description of the current challenges and future directions in the ocular gene therapy field to this review as a supplement. PMID:23358189

  19. Fetal gene therapy: opportunities and risks.

    PubMed

    Wagner, Anna M; Schoeberlein, Andreina; Surbek, Daniel

    2009-08-10

    Advances in human prenatal medicine and molecular genetics have allowed the diagnosis of many genetic diseases early in gestation. In-utero transplantation of allogeneic hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) has been successfully used as a therapy in different animal models and recently also in human fetuses. Unfortunately, clinical success of this novel treatment is limited by the lack of donor cell engraftment in non-immunocompromised hosts and is thus restricted to diseases where the fetus is affected by severe immunodeficiency. Gene therapy using genetically modified autologous HSC circumvents allogeneic HLA barriers and constitutes one of the most promising new approaches to correct genetic deficits in the fetus. Recent developments of strategies to overcome failure of efficient transduction of quiescent hematopoietic cells include the use of new vector constructs and transduction protocols. These improvements open new perspectives for gene therapy in general and for prenatal gene transfer in particular. The fetus may be especially susceptible for successful gene therapy due to the immunologic naiveté of the immature hematopoietic system during gestation, precluding an immune reaction towards the transgene. Ethical issues, in particular those regarding treatment safety, must be taken into account before clinical trials with fetal gene therapy in human pregnancies can be initiated.

  20. New tools in regenerative medicine: gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Muñoz Ruiz, Miguel; Regueiro, José R

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy aims to transfer genetic material into cells to provide them with new functions. A gene transfer agent has to be safe, capable of expressing the desired gene for a sustained period of time in a sufficiently large population of cells to produce a biological effect. Identifying a gene transfer tool that meets all of these criteria has proven to be a difficult objective. Viral and nonviral vectors, in vivo, ex vivo and in situ strategies co-exist at present, although ex vivo lenti-or retroviral vectors are presently the most popular.Natural stem cells (from embryonic, hematopoietic, mesenchymal, or adult tissues) or induced progenitor stem (iPS) cells can be modified by gene therapy for use in regenerative medicine. Among them, hematopoietic stem cells have shown clear clinical benefit, but iPS cells hold humongous potential with no ethical concerns.

  1. Polyamine analogues targeting epigenetic gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Yi; Marton, Laurence J; Woster, Patrick M; Casero, Robert A

    2009-11-04

    Over the past three decades the metabolism and functions of the polyamines have been actively pursued as targets for antineoplastic therapy. Interactions between cationic polyamines and negatively charged nucleic acids play a pivotal role in DNA stabilization and RNA processing that may affect gene expression, translation and protein activity. Our growing understanding of the unique roles that the polyamines play in chromatin regulation, and the discovery of novel proteins homologous with specific regulatory enzymes in polyamine metabolism, have led to our interest in exploring chromatin remodelling enzymes as potential therapeutic targets for specific polyamine analogues. One of our initial efforts focused on utilizing the strong affinity that the polyamines have for chromatin to create a backbone structure, which could be combined with active-site-directed inhibitor moieties of HDACs (histone deacetylases). Specific PAHAs (polyaminohydroxamic acids) and PABAs (polyaminobenzamides) polyamine analogues have demonstrated potent inhibition of the HDACs, re-expression of p21 and significant inhibition of tumour growth. A second means of targeting the chromatin-remodelling enzymes with polyamine analogues was facilitated by the recent identification of flavin-dependent LSD1 (lysine-specific demethylase 1). The existence of this enzyme demonstrated that histone lysine methylation is a dynamic process similar to other histone post-translational modifications. LSD1 specifically catalyses demethylation of mono- and di-methyl Lys4 of histone 3, key positive chromatin marks associated with transcriptional activation. Structural and catalytic similarities between LSD1 and polyamine oxidases facilitated the identification of biguanide, bisguanidine and oligoamine polyamine analogues that are potent inhibitors of LSD1. Cellular inhibition of LSD1 by these unique compounds led to the re-activation of multiple epigenetically silenced genes important in tumorigenesis. The use of

  2. The Regulatory Pathway for Advanced Cell Therapy and Gene Therapy Products in Brazil: A Road to Be Built.

    PubMed

    de Freitas, Daniel Roberto Coradi

    2015-01-01

    The regulation of cell therapy and gene therapy products is a major challenge for the Brazilian state. From a legal point of view, the legislative apparatus, including constitutional, prohibits the marketing and patent of human substances. From the point of view of the organization of the state bureaucracy, the responsibilities for the regulation of research and application of these technologies in humans may involve up to four different institutions. The National Agency for Health Surveillance (ANVISA) has been the protagonist in structuring the regulation of cell therapy and gene therapy in Brazil, and steps have been taken to ensure quality of these products. However, obstacles such as the commercialization of these therapies and the need to determine whether these products will be regulated following the assumptions adopted in Brazil for drugs and biological products or for human blood and tissues still remain.

  3. Therapeutic genes for anti-HIV/AIDS gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Bovolenta, Chiara; Porcellini, Simona; Alberici, Luca

    2013-01-01

    The multiple therapeutic approaches developed so far to cope HIV-1 infection, such as anti-retroviral drugs, germicides and several attempts of therapeutic vaccination have provided significant amelioration in terms of life-quality and survival rate of AIDS patients. Nevertheless, no approach has demonstrated efficacy in eradicating this lethal, if untreated, infection. The curative power of gene therapy has been proven for the treatment of monogenic immunodeficiensies, where permanent gene modification of host cells is sufficient to correct the defect for life-time. No doubt, a similar concept is not applicable for gene therapy of infectious immunodeficiensies as AIDS, where there is not a single gene to be corrected; rather engineered cells must gain immunotherapeutic or antiviral features to grant either short- or long-term efficacy mostly by acquisition of antiviral genes or payloads. Anti-HIV/AIDS gene therapy is one of the most promising strategy, although challenging, to eradicate HIV-1 infection. In fact, genetic modification of hematopoietic stem cells with one or multiple therapeutic genes is expected to originate blood cell progenies resistant to viral infection and thereby able to prevail on infected unprotected cells. Ultimately, protected cells will re-establish a functional immune system able to control HIV-1 replication. More than hundred gene therapy clinical trials against AIDS employing different viral vectors and transgenes have been approved or are currently ongoing worldwide. This review will overview anti-HIV-1 infection gene therapy field evaluating strength and weakness of the transgenes and payloads used in the past and of those potentially exploitable in the future.

  4. Evolving Gene Therapy in Primary Immunodeficiency.

    PubMed

    Thrasher, Adrian J; Williams, David A

    2017-05-03

    Prior to the first successful bone marrow transplant in 1968, patients born with severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) invariably died. Today, with a widening availability of newborn screening, major improvements in the application of allogeneic procedures, and the emergence of successful hematopoietic stem and progenitor cell (HSC/P) gene therapy, the majority of these children can be identified and cured. Here, we trace key steps in the development of clinical gene therapy for SCID and other primary immunodeficiencies (PIDs), and review the prospects for adoption of new targets and technologies. Copyright © 2017 The American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. NIH modifies gene therapy research guidelines.

    PubMed

    Levine, Carol

    1985-06-01

    In response to public comments on the first draft of its "Points to Consider in the Design and Submission of Human Somatic-Cell Gene Therapy Protocols," the Working Group on Human Gene Therapy of the National Institutes of Health has issued a revised set of guidelines for researchers. This second draft spells out the need for public review of gene therapy protocols, the Working Group's willingness to review selected protocols before the completion of animal studies, and requirements for informed consent to long-term follow-up and to autopsy in the event of death. The document also expresses the Working Group's concern that researchers and the public be kept fully informed of the results of such studies.

  6. Gene Therapy for Fracture Repair

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2005-12-01

    chemotactic factor for human mast cells. J. Immunol. 153: 3717-3723. 36 41. Ono I, Yamashita T, Hida T, Jin HY, Ito Y, Hamada H, Akasaka Y, Ishii T...1994;153:3717–23. [37] Ono I, Yamashita T, Hida T, Jin HY, Ito Y, Hamada H, et al. Local administration of hepatocyte growth factor gene enhances the

  7. Engineering targeted viral vectors for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Waehler, Reinhard; Russell, Stephen J; Curiel, David T

    2007-08-01

    To achieve therapeutic success, transfer vehicles for gene therapy must be capable of transducing target cells while avoiding impact on non-target cells. Despite the high transduction efficiency of viral vectors, their tropism frequently does not match the therapeutic need. In the past, this lack of appropriate targeting allowed only partial exploitation of the great potential of gene therapy. Substantial progress in modifying viral vectors using diverse techniques now allows targeting to many cell types in vitro. Although important challenges remain for in vivo applications, the first clinical trials with targeted vectors have already begun to take place.

  8. Gene therapy in Alzheimer's disease - potential for disease modification.

    PubMed

    Nilsson, Per; Iwata, Nobuhisa; Muramatsu, Shin-ichi; Tjernberg, Lars O; Winblad, Bengt; Saido, Takaomi C

    2010-04-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the major cause of dementia in the elderly, leading to memory loss and cognitive decline. The mechanism underlying onset of the disease has not been fully elucidated. However, characteristic pathological manifestations include extracellular accumulation and aggregation of the amyloid beta-peptide (Abeta) into plaques and intracellular accumulation and aggregation of hyperphosphorylated tau, forming neurofibrillary tangles. Despite extensive research worldwide, no disease modifying treatment is yet available. In this review, we focus on gene therapy as a potential treatment for AD, and summarize recent work in the field, ranging from proof-of-concept studies in animal models to clinical trials. The multifactorial causes of AD offer a variety of possible targets for gene therapy, including two neurotrophic growth factors, nerve growth factor and brain-derived neurotrophic factor, Abeta-degrading enzymes, such as neprilysin, endothelin-converting enzyme and cathepsin B, and AD associated apolipoprotein E. This review also discusses advantages and drawbacks of various rapidly developing virus-mediated gene delivery techniques for gene therapy. Finally, approaches aiming at down-regulating amyloid precursor protein (APP) and beta-site APP cleaving enzyme 1 levels by means of siRNA-mediated knockdown are briefly summarized. Overall, the prospects appear hopeful that gene therapy has the potential to be a disease modifying treatment for AD.

  9. Radiopharmaceutical and Gene Therapy Program

    SciTech Connect

    Buchsbaum, Donald J.

    2006-02-09

    The objective of our research program was to determine whether novel receptors can be induced in solid cancers as a target for therapy with radiolabeled unmodified peptides that bind to the receptors. The hypothesis was that induction of a high number of receptors on the surface of these cancer cells would result in an increased uptake of the radiolabeled monomeric peptides as compared to published results with radiolabeled antibodies or peptides to naturally expressed antigens or receptors, and therefore a better therapeutic outcome. The following is a summary of published results.

  10. Haemophilia gene therapy: Progress and challenges.

    PubMed

    Lheriteau, Elsa; Davidoff, Andrew M; Nathwani, Amit C

    2015-09-01

    Current treatment for haemophilia entails life-long intravenous infusion of clotting factor concentrates. This is highly effective at controlling and preventing haemorrhage and its associated complications. Clotting factor replacement therapy is, however, demanding, exceedingly expensive and not curative. In contrast, gene therapy for haemophilia offers the potential of a cure as a result of continuous endogenous expression of biologically active factor VIII (FVIII) or factor IX (FIX) proteins following stable transfer of a normal copy of the respective gene. Our group has recently established the first clear proof-of-concept for a gene therapy approach to the treatment of severe haemophilia B. This entails a single intravenous administration of an adeno-associated virus vector encoding an optimised FIX gene, resulting in a long-term (>4 years) dose dependent increase in plasma FIX levels at therapeutic levels without persistent or late toxicity. Gene therapy therefore has the potential to change the treatment paradigm for haemophilia but several hurdles need to be overcome before this can happen. This review provides a summary of the progress made to date and discusses the remaining changes.

  11. INTERFEROME: the database of interferon regulated genes

    PubMed Central

    Samarajiwa, Shamith A.; Forster, Sam; Auchettl, Katie; Hertzog, Paul J.

    2009-01-01

    INTERFEROME is an open access database of types I, II and III Interferon regulated genes (http://www.interferome.org) collected from analysing expression data sets of cells treated with IFNs. This database of interferon regulated genes integrates information from high-throughput experiments with annotation, ontology, orthologue sequences from 37 species, tissue expression patterns and gene regulatory information to enable a detailed investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying IFN biology. INTERFEROME fulfils a need in infection, immunity, development and cancer research by providing computational tools to assist in identifying interferon signatures in gene lists generated by high-throughput expression technologies, and their potential molecular and biological consequences. PMID:18996892

  12. INTERFEROME: the database of interferon regulated genes.

    PubMed

    Samarajiwa, Shamith A; Forster, Sam; Auchettl, Katie; Hertzog, Paul J

    2009-01-01

    INTERFEROME is an open access database of types I, II and III Interferon regulated genes (http://www.interferome.org) collected from analysing expression data sets of cells treated with IFNs. This database of interferon regulated genes integrates information from high-throughput experiments with annotation, ontology, orthologue sequences from 37 species, tissue expression patterns and gene regulatory information to enable a detailed investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying IFN biology. INTERFEROME fulfils a need in infection, immunity, development and cancer research by providing computational tools to assist in identifying interferon signatures in gene lists generated by high-throughput expression technologies, and their potential molecular and biological consequences.

  13. Gene repair and transposon-mediated gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Paul D; Augustin, Lance B; Kren, Betsy T; Steer, Clifford J

    2002-01-01

    The main strategy of gene therapy has traditionally been focused on gene augmentation. This approach typically involves the introduction of an expression system designed to express a specific protein in the transfected cell. Both the basic and clinical sciences have generated enough information to suggest that gene therapy would eventually alter the fundamental practice of modern medicine. However, despite progress in the field, widespread clinical applications and success have not been achieved. The myriad deficiencies associated with gene augmentation have resulted in the development of alternative approaches to treat inherited and acquired genetic disorders. One, derived primarily from the pioneering work of homologous recombination, is gene repair. Simply stated, the process involves targeting the mutation in situ for gene correction and a return to normal gene function. Site-specific genetic repair has many advantages over augmentation although it too is associated with significant limitations. This review outlines the advantages and disadvantages of gene correction. In particular, we discuss technologies based on chimeric RNA/DNA oligonucleotides, single-stranded and triplex-forming oligonucleotides, and small fragment homologous replacement. While each of these approaches is different, they all share a number of common characteristics, including the need for efficient delivery of nucleic acids to the nucleus. In addition, we review the potential application of a novel and exciting nonviral gene augmentation strategy--the Sleeping Beauty transposon system.

  14. Genome editing for human gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Meissner, Torsten B; Mandal, Pankaj K; Ferreira, Leonardo M R; Rossi, Derrick J; Cowan, Chad A

    2014-01-01

    The rapid advancement of genome-editing techniques holds much promise for the field of human gene therapy. From bacteria to model organisms and human cells, genome editing tools such as zinc-finger nucleases (ZNFs), TALENs, and CRISPR/Cas9 have been successfully used to manipulate the respective genomes with unprecedented precision. With regard to human gene therapy, it is of great interest to test the feasibility of genome editing in primary human hematopoietic cells that could potentially be used to treat a variety of human genetic disorders such as hemoglobinopathies, primary immunodeficiencies, and cancer. In this chapter, we explore the use of the CRISPR/Cas9 system for the efficient ablation of genes in two clinically relevant primary human cell types, CD4+ T cells and CD34+ hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. By using two guide RNAs directed at a single locus, we achieve highly efficient and predictable deletions that ablate gene function. The use of a Cas9-2A-GFP fusion protein allows FACS-based enrichment of the transfected cells. The ease of designing, constructing, and testing guide RNAs makes this dual guide strategy an attractive approach for the efficient deletion of clinically relevant genes in primary human hematopoietic stem and effector cells and enables the use of CRISPR/Cas9 for gene therapy.

  15. [Gene therapy for inherited retinal dystrophies].

    PubMed

    Côco, Monique; Han, Sang Won; Sallum, Juliana Maria Ferraz

    2009-01-01

    The inherited retinal dystrophies comprise a large number of disorders characterized by a slow and progressive retinal degeneration. They are the result of mutations in genes that express in either the photoreceptor cells or the retinal pigment epithelium. The mode of inheritance can be autosomal dominant, autosomal recessive, X linked recessive, digenic or mitochondrial DNA inherited. At the moment, there is no treatment for these conditions and the patients can expect a progressive loss of vision. Accurate genetic counseling and support for rehabilitation are indicated. Research into the molecular and genetic basis of disease is continually expanding and improving the prospects for rational treatments. In this way, gene therapy, defined as the introduction of exogenous genetic material into human cells for therapeutic purposes, may ultimately offer the greatest treatment for the inherited retinal dystrophies. The eye is an attractive target for gene therapy because of its accessibility, immune privilege and translucent media. A number of retinal diseases affecting the eye have known gene defects. Besides, there is a well characterized animal model for many of these conditions. Proposals for clinical trials of gene therapy for inherited retinal degenerations owing to defects in the gene RPE65, have recently received ethical approval and the obtained preliminary results brought large prospects in the improvement on patient's quality of life.

  16. The Mucus Barrier to Inhaled Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Duncan, Gregg A; Jung, James; Hanes, Justin; Suk, Jung Soo

    2016-12-01

    Recent evidence suggests that the airway mucus gel layer may be impermeable to the viral and synthetic gene vectors used in past inhaled gene therapy clinical trials for diseases like cystic fibrosis. These findings support the logic that inhaled gene vectors that are incapable of penetrating the mucus barrier are unlikely to provide meaningful benefit to patients. In this review, we discuss the biochemical and biophysical features of mucus that contribute its barrier function, and how these barrier properties may be reinforced in patients with lung disease. We next review biophysical techniques used to assess the potential ability of gene vectors to penetrate airway mucus. Finally, we provide new data suggesting that fresh human airway mucus should be used to test the penetration rates of gene vectors. The physiological barrier properties of spontaneously expectorated CF sputum remained intact up to 24 hours after collection when refrigerated at 4 °C. Conversely, the barrier properties were significantly altered after freezing and thawing of sputum samples. Gene vectors capable of overcoming the airway mucus barrier hold promise as a means to provide the widespread gene transfer throughout the airway epithelium required to achieve meaningful patient outcomes in inhaled gene therapy clinical trials.

  17. Renal diseases as targets of gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Brett; Giannoukakis, Nick; Trucco, Massimo

    2008-01-01

    A number of renal pathologies exist that have seen little or no improvement in treatment methods over the past 20 years. These pathologies include acute and chronic kidney diseases as well as posttransplant kidney survival and host rejection. A novel approach to treatment methodology may provide new insight to further progress our understanding of the disease and overall patient outcome. Recent advances in human genomics and gene delivery systems have opened the door to possible cures through the direct modulation of cellular genes. These techniques of gene therapy have not been extensively applied to renal pathologies, but clinical trials on other organ systems and kidney research in animal models hold promise. Techniques have employed viral and nonviral vectors to deliver gene modulating compounds directly into the cell. These vectors have the capability to replace defective alleles, express novel genes, or suppress the expression of pathogenic genes in a wide variety of kidney cell types. Focus has also been placed on ex vivo modification of kidney tissue to promote allograft survival and limit the resulting immune response to the transplanted organ. This could prove a valuable alternative to current immunosuppressive drugs and their deleterious effects on patients. While continued research and clinical trials are needed to identify a robust system of gene delivery, gene therapy techniques have great potential to treat kidney disease at the cellular level and improve patient quality of life.

  18. Regulatory Oversight of Cell and Gene Therapy Products in Canada.

    PubMed

    Ridgway, Anthony; Agbanyo, Francisca; Wang, Jian; Rosu-Myles, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Health Canada regulates gene therapy products and many cell therapy products as biological drugs under the Canadian Food and Drugs Act and its attendant regulations. Cellular products that meet certain criteria, including minimal manipulation and homologous use, may be subjected to a standards-based approach under the Safety of Human Cells, Tissues and Organs for Transplantation Regulations. The manufacture and clinical testing of cell and gene therapy products (CGTPs) presents many challenges beyond those for protein biologics. Cells cannot be subjected to pathogen removal or inactivation procedures and must frequently be administered shortly after final formulation. Viral vector design and manufacturing control are critically important to overall product quality and linked to safety and efficacy in patients through concerns such as replication competence, vector integration, and vector shedding. In addition, for many CGTPs, the value of nonclinical studies is largely limited to providing proof of concept, and the first meaningful data relating to appropriate dosing, safety parameters, and validity of surrogate or true determinants of efficacy must come from carefully designed clinical trials in patients. Addressing these numerous challenges requires application of various risk mitigation strategies and meeting regulatory expectations specifically adapted to the product types. Regulatory cooperation and harmonisation at an international level are essential for progress in the development and commercialisation of these products. However, particularly in the area of cell therapy, new regulatory paradigms may be needed to harness the benefits of clinical progress in situations where the resources and motivation to pursue a typical drug product approval pathway may be lacking.

  19. Gene Therapy for Fracture Repair

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2003-12-01

    relative transgene expression efficiencies for the MLV-based and lentiviral-based vectors, the Enhanced Green Fluorescent Protein (EGFP) was used as...for both Cy3 and Cy5 2,-15i Hybridized to to Aigilent Rat -s 2-- Gene Chip - iGnTrr. . tea 2 ug universal RNAw silx sl59 (?es) Cy310-0 (control) 1...fractures were also examined at sacrifice for evidence of fibrosis due to irritation or migration of the stabilizing pin. None was observed and the fracture

  20. [Developments in gene delivery vectors for ocular gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Khabou, Hanen; Dalkara, Deniz

    2015-05-01

    Gene therapy is quickly becoming a reality applicable in the clinic for inherited retinal diseases. Its remarkable success in safety and efficacy, in clinical trials for Leber's congenital amaurosis (LCA) type II generated significant interest and opened up possibilities for a new era of retinal gene therapies. Success in these clinical trials was mainly due to the favorable characteristics of the retina as a target organ. The eye offers several advantages as it is readily accessible and has some degree of immune privilege making it suitable for application of viral vectors. The viral vectors most frequently used for retinal gene delivery are lentivirus, adenovirus and adeno-associated virus (AAV). Here we will discuss the use of these viral vectors in retinal gene delivery with a strong focus on favorable properties of AAV. Thanks to its small size, AAV diffuses well in the inter-neural matrix making it suitable for applications in neural retina. Building on this initial clinical success with LCA II, we have now many opportunities to extend this proof-of-concept to other retinal diseases using AAV as a vector. This article will discuss what are some of the most imminent cellular targets for such therapies and the AAV toolkit that has been built to target these cells successfully. We will also discuss some of the challenges that we face in translating AAV-based gene therapies to the clinic.

  1. Gene Insertion Into Genomic Safe Harbors for Human Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Papapetrou, Eirini P; Schambach, Axel

    2016-01-01

    Genomic safe harbors (GSHs) are sites in the genome able to accommodate the integration of new genetic material in a manner that ensures that the newly inserted genetic elements: (i) function predictably and (ii) do not cause alterations of the host genome posing a risk to the host cell or organism. GSHs are thus ideal sites for transgene insertion whose use can empower functional genetics studies in basic research and therapeutic applications in human gene therapy. Currently, no fully validated GSHs exist in the human genome. Here, we review our formerly proposed GSH criteria and discuss additional considerations on extending these criteria, on strategies for the identification and validation of GSHs, as well as future prospects on GSH targeting for therapeutic applications. In view of recent advances in genome biology, gene targeting technologies, and regenerative medicine, gene insertion into GSHs can potentially catalyze nearly all applications in human gene therapy. PMID:26867951

  2. Gene Regulation Networks for Modeling Drosophila Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mjolsness, E.

    1999-01-01

    This chapter will very briefly introduce and review some computational experiments in using trainable gene regulation network models to simulate and understand selected episodes in the development of the fruit fly, Drosophila Melanogaster.

  3. Cancer gene therapy using mesenchymal stem cells.

    PubMed

    Uchibori, Ryosuke; Tsukahara, Tomonori; Ohmine, Ken; Ozawa, Keiya

    2014-04-01

    Cellular and gene therapies represent promising treatment strategies at the frontier of medicine. Hematopoietic stem cells, lymphocytes, and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) can all serve as sources of cells for use in such therapies. Strategies for gene therapy are often based on those of cell therapy, and it is anticipated that some examples will be put to practical use in the near future. Given their ability to support hematopoiesis, MSCs may be useful for the enhancement of stem cell engraftment, and the acceleration of hematopoietic reconstitution. Furthermore, MSCs may advance the treatment of severe graft-versus-host disease, based on their immunosuppressive ability. This application is also based on the homing behavior of MSCs to sites of injury and inflammation. Interestingly, MSCs possess tumor-homing ability, opening up the possibility of applications in the targeted delivery of anti-cancer genes to tumors. Many reports have indicated that MSCs can be utilized to target tumors and to deliver anti-cancer molecules locally, as tumors are recognized as non-healing wounds with inflammatory tissue. Here, we review both the potential of MSCs as cellular vehicles for targeted cancer therapy and the molecular mechanisms underlying MSC accumulation at tumor sites.

  4. Clinical adenoviral gene therapy for prostate cancer.

    PubMed

    Schenk, Ellen; Essand, Magnus; Bangma, Chris H; Barber, Chris; Behr, Jean-Paul; Briggs, Simon; Carlisle, Robert; Cheng, Wing-Shing; Danielsson, Angelika; Dautzenberg, Iris J C; Dzojic, Helena; Erbacher, Patrick; Fisher, Kerry; Frazier, April; Georgopoulos, Lindsay J; Hoeben, Rob; Kochanek, Stefan; Koppers-Lalic, Daniela; Kraaij, Robert; Kreppel, Florian; Lindholm, Leif; Magnusson, Maria; Maitland, Norman; Neuberg, Patrick; Nilsson, Berith; Ogris, Manfred; Remy, Jean-Serge; Scaife, Michelle; Schooten, Erik; Seymour, Len; Totterman, Thomas; Uil, Taco G; Ulbrich, Karel; Veldhoven-Zweistra, Joke L M; de Vrij, Jeroen; van Weerden, Wytske; Wagner, Ernst; Willemsen, Ralph

    2010-07-01

    Prostate cancer is at present the most common malignancy in men in the Western world. When localized to the prostate, this disease can be treated by curative therapy such as surgery and radiotherapy. However, a substantial number of patients experience a recurrence, resulting in spreading of tumor cells to other parts of the body. In this advanced stage of the disease only palliative treatment is available. Therefore, there is a clear clinical need for new treatment modalities that can, on the one hand, enhance the cure rate of primary therapy for localized prostate cancer and, on the other hand, improve the treatment of metastasized disease. Gene therapy is now being explored in the clinic as a treatment option for the various stages of prostate cancer. Current clinical experiences are based predominantly on trials with adenoviral vectors. As the first of a trilogy of reviews on the state of the art and future prospects of gene therapy in prostate cancer, this review focuses on the clinical experiences and progress of adenovirus-mediated gene therapy for this disease.

  5. ORTHOPAEDIC GENE THERAPY – LOST IN TRANSLATION?

    PubMed Central

    Evans, C.H.; Ghivizzani, S.C.; Robbins, P.D.

    2011-01-01

    Orthopaedic gene therapy has been the topic of considerable research for two decades. The preclinical data are impressive and many orthopaedic conditions are well suited to genetic therapies. But there have been few clinical trials and no FDA-approved product exists. This paper examines why this is so. The reasons are multifactorial. Clinical translation is expensive and difficult to fund by traditional academic routes. Because gene therapy is viewed as unsafe and risky, it does not attract major funding from the pharmaceutical industry. Start-up companies are burdened by the complex intellectual property environment and difficulties in dealing with the technology transfer offices of major universities. Successful translation requires close interactions between scientists, clinicians and experts in regulatory and compliance issues. It is difficult to create such a favourable translational environment. Other promising fields of biological therapy have contemplated similar frustrations approximately 20 years after their founding, so there seem to be more general constraints on translation that are difficult to define. Gene therapy has noted some major clinical successes in recent years, and a sense of optimism is returning to the field. We hope that orthopaedic applications will benefit collaterally from this upswing and move expeditiously into advanced clinical trials. PMID:21948071

  6. Orthopedic gene therapy--lost in translation?

    PubMed

    Evans, C H; Ghivizzani, S C; Robbins, P D

    2012-02-01

    Orthopedic gene therapy has been the topic of considerable research for two decades. The preclinical data are impressive and many orthopedic conditions are well suited to genetic therapies. But there have been few clinical trials and no FDA-approved product exists. This paper examines why this is so. The reasons are multifactorial. Clinical translation is expensive and difficult to fund by traditional academic routes. Because gene therapy is viewed as unsafe and risky, it does not attract major funding from the pharmaceutical industry. Start-up companies are burdened by the complex intellectual property environment and difficulties in dealing with the technology transfer offices of major universities. Successful translation requires close interactions between scientists, clinicians and experts in regulatory and compliance issues. It is difficult to create such a favorable translational environment. Other promising fields of biological therapy have contemplated similar frustrations approximately 20 years after their founding, so there seem to be more general constraints on translation that are difficult to define. Gene therapy has noted some major clinical successes in recent years, and a sense of optimism is returning to the field. We hope that orthopedic applications will benefit collaterally from this upswing and move expeditiously into advanced clinical trials. Copyright © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Review: Stem cells and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Alenzi, Faris Q; Lotfy, Mahmoud; Tamimi, Waleed G; Wyse, Richard K H

    2010-09-01

    Both stem cell and gene therapy research are currently the focus of intense research in institutions and companies around the world. Both approaches hold great promise by offering radical new and successful ways of treating debilitating and incurable diseases effectively. Gene therapy is an approach to treat, cure, or ultimately prevent disease by changing the pattern of gene expression. It is mostly experimental, but a number of clinical human trials have already been conducted. Gene therapy can be targeted to somatic or germ cells; the most common vectors are viruses. Scientists manipulate the viral genome and thus introduce therapeutic genes to the target organ. Viruses, in this context, can cause adverse events such as toxicity, immune and inflammatory responses, as well as gene control and targeting issues. Alternative modalities being considered are complexes of DNA with lipids and proteins. Stem cells are primitive cells that have the capacity to self renew as well as to differentiate into 1 or more mature cell types. Pluripotent embryonic stem cells derived from the inner cell mass can develop into more than 200 different cells and differentiate into cells of the 3 germ cell layers. Because of their capacity of unlimited expansion and pluripotency, they are useful in regenerative medicine. Tissue or adult stem cells produce cells specific to the tissue in which they are found. They are relatively unspecialized and predetermined to give rise to specific cell types when they differentiate. The current review provides a summary of our current knowledge of stem cells and gene therapy as well as their clinical implications and related therapeutic options.

  8. Comparative aspects of kisspeptin gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Kitahashi, Takashi; Parhar, Ishwar S

    2013-01-15

    Kisspeptin plays an important role in the onset of puberty through stimulation of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH), a master molecule of reproduction. Furthermore, the existence of multiple kisspeptins is evident in most vertebrate species. Therefore, elucidating the regulatory mechanisms of the kisspeptin genes is important to understand the functions of multiple kisspeptin forms in the brain. This review focuses on the comparative aspects of kisspeptin gene regulation with an emphasis on the role of environmental signals including gonadal steroids, photoperiods and metabolic signals. These environmental signals differently regulate the kisspeptin genes distinctively in each species. In addition, photoperiodic regulation of the kisspeptin genes alters during sexual maturational, suggesting interactions between the gonadal hormone pathway and the photoperiod pathway. Further studies of the regulatory mechanisms of kisspeptin genes especially in teleosts which possess multiple kisspeptin/kisspeptin receptor systems will help to understand the precise role of multiple kisspeptin forms in different species. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Cell cycle regulated gene expression in yeasts.

    PubMed

    McInerny, Christopher J

    2011-01-01

    The regulation of gene expression through the mitotic cell cycle, so that genes are transcribed at particular cell cycle times, is widespread among eukaryotes. In some cases, it appears to be important for control mechanisms, as deregulated expression results in uncontrolled cell divisions, which can cause cell death, disease, and malignancy. In this review, I describe the current understanding of such regulated gene expression in two established simple eukaryotic model organisms, the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae and the fission yeast Schizosaccharomyces pombe. In these two yeasts, the global pattern of cell cycle gene expression has been well described, and most of the transcription factors that control the various waves of gene expression, and how they are in turn themselves regulated, have been characterized. As related mechanisms occur in all other eukaryotes, including humans, yeasts offer an excellent paradigm to understand this important molecular process. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Aptamer-mediated cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Xiang, Dongxi; Shigdar, Sarah; Qiao, Greg; Zhou, Shu-Feng; Li, Yong; Wei, Ming Q; Qiao, Liang; Shamaileh, Hadi Al; Zhu, Yimin; Zheng, Conglong; Pu, Chunwen; Duan, Wei

    2015-01-01

    Cancer as a genetic disorder is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Conventional anticancer options such as chemo- and/or radio-therapy have their own drawbacks and could not provide a cure in most cases at present. More effective therapeutic strategies with less side effects are urgently needed. Aptamers, also known as chemical antibodies, are single strand DNA or RNA molecules that can bind to their target molecules with high affinity and specificity. Such site-specific binding ability of aptamers facilitates the delivery and interaction of exogenous nucleic acids with diseased genes. Thus, aptamer-guided gene therapy has emerged as a promising anticancer strategy in addition to the classic treatment regimen. Aptamers can directly deliver anti-cancer nucleic acids, e.g. small interfering RNA, micro RNA, antimicroRNA and small hairpin RNA, to cancer cells or function as a targeting ligand to guide nanoparticles containing therapeutic nucleic acids. This review focuses on recent progress in aptamer-mediated gene therapy for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma and other types of cancers, shedding light on the potential of this novel approach of targeted cancer gene therapy.

  11. Gene Therapy and Targeted Toxins for Glioma

    PubMed Central

    Castro, Maria G.; Candolfi, Marianela; Kroeger, Kurt; King, Gwendalyn D.; Curtin, James F.; Yagiz, Kader; Mineharu, Yohei; Assi, Hikmat; Wibowo, Mia; Muhammad, AKM Ghulam; Foulad, David; Puntel, Mariana; Lowenstein, Pedro R.

    2011-01-01

    The most common primary brain tumor in adults is glioblastoma. These tumors are highly invasive and aggressive with a mean survival time of nine to twelve months from diagnosis to death. Current treatment modalities are unable to significantly prolong survival in patients diagnosed with glioblastoma. As such, glioma is an attractive target for developing novel therapeutic approaches utilizing gene therapy. This review will examine the available preclinical models for glioma including xenographs, syngeneic and genetic models. Several promising therapeutic targets are currently being pursued in pre-clinical investigations. These targets will be reviewed by mechanism of action, i.e., conditional cytotoxic, targeted toxins, oncolytic viruses, tumor suppressors/oncogenes, and immune stimulatory approaches. Preclinical gene therapy paradigms aim to determine which strategies will provide rapid tumor regression and long-term protection from recurrence. While a wide range of potential targets are being investigated preclinically, only the most efficacious are further transitioned into clinical trial paradigms. Clinical trials reported to date are summarized including results from conditionally cytotoxic, targeted toxins, oncolytic viruses and oncogene targeting approaches. Clinical trial results have not been as robust as preclinical models predicted; this could be due to the limitations of the GBM models employed. Once this is addressed, and we develop effective gene therapies in models that better replicate the clinical scenario, gene therapy will provide a powerful approach to treat and manage brain tumors. PMID:21453286

  12. Gene and cell therapy for pancreatic cancer.

    PubMed

    Singh, Hans Martin; Ungerechts, Guy; Tsimberidou, Apostolia M

    2015-04-01

    The clinical outcomes of patients with pancreatic cancer are poor, and the limited success of classical chemotherapy underscores the need for new, targeted approaches for this disease. The delivery of genetic material to cells allows for a variety of therapeutic concepts. Engineered agents based on synthetic biology are under clinical investigation in various cancers, including pancreatic cancer. This review focuses on Phase I - III clinical trials of gene and cell therapy for pancreatic cancer and on future implications of recent translational research. Trials available in the US National Library of Medicine (www.clinicaltrials.gov) until February 2014 were reviewed and relevant published results of preclinical and clinical studies were retrieved from www.pubmed.gov . In pancreatic cancer, gene and cell therapies are feasible and may have synergistic antitumor activity with standard treatment and/or immunotherapy. Challenges are related to application safety, manufacturing costs, and a new spectrum of adverse events. Further studies are needed to evaluate available agents in carefully designed protocols and combination regimens. Enabling personalized cancer therapy, insights from molecular diagnostic technologies will guide the development and selection of new gene-based drugs. The evolving preclinical and clinical data on gene-based therapies can lay the foundation for future avenues improving patient care in pancreatic cancer.

  13. Gene therapy and targeted toxins for glioma.

    PubMed

    Castro, Maria G; Candolfi, Marianela; Kroeger, Kurt; King, Gwendalyn D; Curtin, James F; Yagiz, Kader; Mineharu, Yohei; Assi, Hikmat; Wibowo, Mia; Ghulam Muhammad, A K M; Foulad, David; Puntel, Mariana; Lowenstein, Pedro R

    2011-06-01

    The most common primary brain tumor in adults is glioblastoma. These tumors are highly invasive and aggressive with a mean survival time of 15-18 months from diagnosis to death. Current treatment modalities are unable to significantly prolong survival in patients diagnosed with glioblastoma. As such, glioma is an attractive target for developing novel therapeutic approaches utilizing gene therapy. This review will examine the available preclinical models for glioma including xenographs, syngeneic and genetic models. Several promising therapeutic targets are currently being pursued in pre-clinical investigations. These targets will be reviewed by mechanism of action, i.e., conditional cytotoxic, targeted toxins, oncolytic viruses, tumor suppressors/oncogenes, and immune stimulatory approaches. Preclinical gene therapy paradigms aim to determine which strategies will provide rapid tumor regression and long-term protection from recurrence. While a wide range of potential targets are being investigated preclinically, only the most efficacious are further transitioned into clinical trial paradigms. Clinical trials reported to date are summarized including results from conditionally cytotoxic, targeted toxins, oncolytic viruses and oncogene targeting approaches. Clinical trial results have not been as robust as preclinical models predicted; this could be due to the limitations of the GBM models employed. Once this is addressed, and we develop effective gene therapies in models that better replicate the clinical scenario, gene therapy will provide a powerful approach to treat and manage brain tumors.

  14. Gene therapy in dentistry: present and future.

    PubMed

    Baum, Bruce J

    2014-12-01

    Gene therapy is one of several novel biological treatments under active study for a wide variety of clinical applications, including many relevant to dentistry. This review will provide some background on this therapeutic approach, assess the current state of its applications generally, and in the oral cavity, and suggest the implications for its use in the next 25 years.

  15. Gene Therapy for "Bubble Boy" Disease.

    PubMed

    Hoggatt, Jonathan

    2016-07-14

    Adenosine deaminase (ADA) deficiency results in the accumulation of toxic metabolites that destroy the immune system, causing severe combined immunodeficiency (ADA-SCID), often referred to as the "bubble boy" disease. Strimvelis is a European Medicines Agency approved gene therapy for ADA-SCID patients without a suitable bone marrow donor.

  16. Foamy Virus Vectors for HIV Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Olszko, Miles E.; Trobridge, Grant D.

    2013-01-01

    Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has vastly improved outcomes for patients infected with HIV, yet it is a lifelong regimen that is expensive and has significant side effects. Retroviral gene therapy is a promising alternative treatment for HIV/AIDS; however, inefficient gene delivery to hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) has so far limited the efficacy of this approach. Foamy virus (FV) vectors are derived from non-pathogenic viruses that are not endemic to the human population. FV vectors have been used to deliver HIV-inhibiting transgenes to human HSCs, and they have several advantages relative to other retroviral vectors. These include an attractive safety profile, broad tropism, a large transgene capacity, and the ability to persist in quiescent cells. In addition, the titers of FV vectors are not reduced by anti-HIV transgenes that affect the production of lentivirus (LV) vectors. Thus FV vectors are very promising for anti-HIV gene therapy. This review covers the advantages of FV vectors and describes their preclinical development for anti-HIV gene therapy. PMID:24153061

  17. Cardiac gene therapy: optimization of gene delivery techniques in vivo.

    PubMed

    Katz, Michael G; Swain, JaBaris D; White, Jennifer D; Low, David; Stedman, Hansell; Bridges, Charles R

    2010-04-01

    Vector-mediated cardiac gene therapy holds tremendous promise as a translatable platform technology for treating many cardiovascular diseases. The ideal technique is one that is efficient and practical, allowing for global cardiac gene expression, while minimizing collateral expression in other organs. Here we survey the available in vivo vector-mediated cardiac gene delivery methods--including transcutaneous, intravascular, intramuscular, and cardiopulmonary bypass techniques--with consideration of the relative merits and deficiencies of each. Review of available techniques suggests that an optimal method for vector-mediated gene delivery to the large animal myocardium would ideally employ retrograde and/or anterograde transcoronary gene delivery,extended vector residence time in the coronary circulation, an increased myocardial transcapillary gradient using physical methods, increased endothelial permeability with pharmacological agents, minimal collateral gene expression by isolation of the cardiac circulation from the systemic, and have low immunogenicity.

  18. Cardiac Gene Therapy: Optimization of Gene Delivery Techniques In Vivo

    PubMed Central

    Katz, Michael G.; Swain, JaBaris D.; White, Jennifer D.; Low, David; Stedman, Hansell

    2010-01-01

    Abstract Vector-mediated cardiac gene therapy holds tremendous promise as a translatable platform technology for treating many cardiovascular diseases. The ideal technique is one that is efficient and practical, allowing for global cardiac gene expression, while minimizing collateral expression in other organs. Here we survey the available in vivo vector-mediated cardiac gene delivery methods—including transcutaneous, intravascular, intramuscular, and cardiopulmonary bypass techniques—with consideration of the relative merits and deficiencies of each. Review of available techniques suggests that an optimal method for vector-mediated gene delivery to the large animal myocardium would ideally employ retrograde and/or anterograde transcoronary gene delivery,extended vector residence time in the coronary circulation, an increased myocardial transcapillary gradient using physical methods, increased endothelial permeability with pharmacological agents, minimal collateral gene expression by isolation of the cardiac circulation from the systemic, and have low immunogenicity. PMID:19947886

  19. Epigenetic Regulation of BDNF Gene during Development and Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Kuan-Wei; Chen, Linyi

    2017-01-01

    Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is required for the development of the nervous system, proper cognitive function and memory formation. While aberrant expression of BDNF has been implicated in neurological disorders, the transcriptional regulation of BDNF remains to be elucidated. In response to different stimuli, BDNF expression can be initiated from different promoters. Several studies have suggested that the expression of BDNF is regulated by promoter methylation. An emerging theme points to the possibility that histone modifications at the BDNF promoters may link to the neurological pathology. Thus, understanding the epigenetic regulation at the BDNF promoters will shed light on future therapies for neurological disorders. The present review summarizes the current knowledge of histone modifications of the BDNF gene in neuronal diseases, as well as the developmental regulation of the BDNF gene based on data from the Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE). PMID:28272318

  20. Optimizing ribozymes for somatic cell gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Branch, A D; Klotman, P E

    1998-01-01

    Therapeutic ribozymes are created through a multistep process that requires trial and error. There are few established rules governing ribozyme design, but guidelines are emerging. It is not yet known whether hammerheads and hairpins, the two ribozymes most widely studied as potential gene therapy agents, have the inherent capability to ablate single genes. Their capacity for specificity and selectivity remains to be explored through rigorous experimentation. These experiments require a battery of control molecules, the characteristics of which are outlined here. Methods for completing the steps in the ribozyme development process, from the selection of a target gene to the quantitation of RNA levels, are also presented and discussed.

  1. Chromatin-regulating proteins as targets for cancer therapy

    PubMed Central

    Oike, Takahiro; Ogiwara, Hideaki; Amornwichet, Napapat; Nakano, Takashi; Kohno, Takashi

    2014-01-01

    Chromatin-regulating proteins represent a large class of novel targets for cancer therapy. In the context of radiotherapy, acetylation and deacetylation of histones by histone acetyltransferases (HATs) and histone deacetylases (HDACs) play important roles in the repair of DNA double-strand breaks generated by ionizing irradiation, and are therefore attractive targets for radiosensitization. Small-molecule inhibitors of HATs (garcinol, anacardic acid and curcumin) and HDACs (vorinostat, sodium butyrate and valproic acid) have been shown to sensitize cancer cells to ionizing irradiation in preclinical models, and some of these molecules are being tested in clinical trials, either alone or in combination with radiotherapy. Meanwhile, recent large-scale genome analyses have identified frequent mutations in genes encoding chromatin-regulating proteins, especially in those encoding subunits of the SWI/SNF chromatin-remodeling complex, in various human cancers. These observations have driven researchers toward development of targeted therapies against cancers carrying these mutations. DOT1L inhibition in MLL-rearranged leukemia, EZH2 inhibition in EZH2-mutant or MLL-rearranged hematologic malignancies and SNF5-deficient tumors, BRD4 inhibition in various hematologic malignancies, and BRM inhibition in BRG1-deficient tumors have demonstrated promising anti-tumor effects in preclinical models, and these strategies are currently awaiting clinical application. Overall, the data collected so far suggest that targeting chromatin-regulating proteins is a promising strategy for tomorrow's cancer therapy, including radiotherapy and molecularly targeted chemotherapy. PMID:24522270

  2. Growth factor gene therapy for Alzheimer disease.

    PubMed

    Tuszynski, Mark H; U, Hoi Sang; Alksne, John; Bakay, Roy A; Pay, Mary Margaret; Merrill, David; Thal, Leon J

    2002-11-15

    The capacity to prevent neuronal degeneration and death during the course of progressive neurological disorders such as Alzheimer disease (AD) would represent a significant advance in therapy. Nervous system growth factors are families of naturally produced proteins that, in animal models, exhibit extensive potency in preventing neuronal death due to a variety of causes, reversing age-related atrophy of neurons, and ameliorating functional deficits. The main challenge in translating growth factor therapy to the clinic has been delivery of growth factors to the brain in sufficient concentrations to influence neuronal function. One means of achieving growth factor delivery to the central nervous system in a highly targeted, effective manner may be gene therapy. In this article the authors summarize the development and implementation of nerve growth factor gene delivery as a potential means of reducing cell loss in AD.

  3. Gene therapy used for tissue engineering applications.

    PubMed

    Heyde, Mieke; Partridge, Kris A; Oreffo, Richard O C; Howdle, Steven M; Shakesheff, Kevin M; Garnett, Martin C

    2007-03-01

    This review highlights the advances at the interface between tissue engineering and gene therapy. There are a large number of reports on gene therapy in tissue engineering, and these cover a huge range of different engineered tissues, different vectors, scaffolds and methodology. The review considers separately in-vitro and in-vivo gene transfer methods. The in-vivo gene transfer method is described first, using either viral or non-viral vectors to repair various tissues with and without the use of scaffolds. The use of a scaffold can overcome some of the challenges associated with delivery by direct injection. The ex-vivo method is described in the second half of the review. Attempts have been made to use this therapy for bone, cartilage, wound, urothelial, nerve tissue regeneration and for treating diabetes using viral or non-viral vectors. Again porous polymers can be used as scaffolds for cell transplantation. There are as yet few comparisons between these many different variables to show which is the best for any particular application. With few exceptions, all of the results were positive in showing some gene expression and some consequent effect on tissue growth and remodelling. Some of the principal advantages and disadvantages of various methods are discussed.

  4. The gene therapy revolution in ophthalmology

    PubMed Central

    Al-Saikhan, Fahad I.

    2013-01-01

    The advances in gene therapy hold significant promise for the treatment of ophthalmic conditions. Several studies using animal models have been published. Animal models on retinitis pigmentosa, Leber’s Congenital Amaurosis (LCA), and Stargardt disease have involved the use of adeno-associated virus (AAV) to deliver functional genes into mice and canines. Mice models have been used to show that a mutation in cGMP phosphodiesterase that results in retinitis pigmentosa can be corrected using rAAV vectors. Additionally, rAAV vectors have been successfully used to deliver ribozyme into mice with a subsequent improvement in autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. By using dog models, researchers have made progress in studying X-linked retinitis pigmentosa which results from a RPGR gene mutation. Mouse and canine models have also been used in the study of LCA. The widely studied form of LCA is LCA2, resulting from a mutation in the gene RPE65. Mice and canines that were injected with normal copies of RPE65 gene showed signs such as improved retinal pigment epithelium transduction, visual acuity, and functional recovery. Studies on Stargardt disease have shown that mutations in the ABCA4 gene can be corrected with AAV vectors, or nanoparticles. Gene therapy for the treatment of red–green color blindness was successful in squirrel monkeys. Plans are at an advanced stage to begin clinical trials. Researchers have also proved that CD59 can be used with AMD. Gene therapy is also able to treat primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) in animal models, and studies show it is economically viable. PMID:24227970

  5. The gene therapy revolution in ophthalmology.

    PubMed

    Al-Saikhan, Fahad I

    2013-04-01

    The advances in gene therapy hold significant promise for the treatment of ophthalmic conditions. Several studies using animal models have been published. Animal models on retinitis pigmentosa, Leber's Congenital Amaurosis (LCA), and Stargardt disease have involved the use of adeno-associated virus (AAV) to deliver functional genes into mice and canines. Mice models have been used to show that a mutation in cGMP phosphodiesterase that results in retinitis pigmentosa can be corrected using rAAV vectors. Additionally, rAAV vectors have been successfully used to deliver ribozyme into mice with a subsequent improvement in autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa. By using dog models, researchers have made progress in studying X-linked retinitis pigmentosa which results from a RPGR gene mutation. Mouse and canine models have also been used in the study of LCA. The widely studied form of LCA is LCA2, resulting from a mutation in the gene RPE65. Mice and canines that were injected with normal copies of RPE65 gene showed signs such as improved retinal pigment epithelium transduction, visual acuity, and functional recovery. Studies on Stargardt disease have shown that mutations in the ABCA4 gene can be corrected with AAV vectors, or nanoparticles. Gene therapy for the treatment of red-green color blindness was successful in squirrel monkeys. Plans are at an advanced stage to begin clinical trials. Researchers have also proved that CD59 can be used with AMD. Gene therapy is also able to treat primary open angle glaucoma (POAG) in animal models, and studies show it is economically viable.

  6. How Europe regulates its genes

    SciTech Connect

    Balter, M.

    1991-06-07

    As Europe moves toward unification in 1992, more than two dozen regulations and directives that will affect biotech are working their way through the complex European legislative system. The result could mean tough scrutiny for genetically engineered products. One reason is that the European Community (EC) has chosen to examine genetically engineered products as a special category - an approach the FDA has rejected. Another is that the EC is considering enacting regulations that would mandate consideration of the socioeconomic effects of biotech products in addition to their safety. In addition, some - particularly in industry - fear a nightmare of overlapping and contradictory regulations. It's too soon to tell how well the European system will work, or how stifling the regulations might be. In all likelihood the regulations emerging in Europe won't be demonstrably superior - or inferior - to the American ones, just different, with different strengths and weaknesses. But since many US biotech companies are looking to the huge market that a unified Europe represents, the specifics of those strengths and weaknesses will ultimately be of more than passing interest.

  7. Transcriptional Targeting in Cancer Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    2003-01-01

    Cancer gene therapy has been one of the most exciting areas of therapeutic research in the past decade. In this review, we discuss strategies to restrict transcription of transgenes to tumour cells. A range of promoters which are tissue-specific, tumour-specific, or inducible by exogenous agents are presented. Transcriptional targeting should prevent normal tissue toxicities associated with other cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy. In addition, the specificity of these strategies should provide improved targeting of metastatic tumours following systemic gene delivery. Rapid progress in the ability to specifically control transgenes will allow systemic gene delivery for cancer therapy to become a real possibility in the near future. PMID:12721516

  8. Treating Immunodeficiency through HSC Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Booth, Claire; Gaspar, H Bobby; Thrasher, Adrian J

    2016-04-01

    Haematopoietic stem cell (HSC) gene therapy has been successfully employed as a therapeutic option to treat specific inherited immune deficiencies, including severe combined immune deficiencies (SCID) over the past two decades. Initial clinical trials using first-generation gamma-retroviral vectors to transfer corrective DNA demonstrated clinical benefit for patients, but were associated with leukemogenesis in a number of cases. Safer vectors have since been developed, affording comparable efficacy with an improved biosafety profile. These vectors are now in Phase I/II clinical trials for a number of immune disorders with more preclinical studies underway. Targeted gene editing allowing precise DNA correction via platforms such as ZFNs, TALENs and CRISPR/Cas9 may now offer promising strategies to improve the safety and efficacy of gene therapy in the future.

  9. Fur-regulated genes in Coxiella burnetii.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Heather L; Wilson, Mary J; Seshadri, Rekha; Samuel, James E

    2005-12-01

    In this paper, we describe the identification of an iron-acquisition gene homologue, ferrous iron transporter (feoB) in C. burnetii. The results of a genomic screen for putative Fur-regulated genes and Fur boxes and the development of a two-plasmid system to analyze these Fur boxes will also be illustrated.

  10. Recent progress in gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Chuah, Marinee K; Nair, Nisha; VandenDriessche, Thierry

    2012-06-01

    Hemophilia A and B are X-linked monogenic disorders caused by deficiencies in coagulation factor VIII (FVIII) and factor IX (FIX), respectively. Current treatment for hemophilia involves intravenous infusion of clotting factor concentrates. However, this does not constitute a cure, and the development of gene-based therapies for hemophilia to achieve prolonged high level expression of clotting factors to correct the bleeding diathesis are warranted. Different types of viral and nonviral gene delivery systems and a wide range of different target cells, including hepatocytes, skeletal muscle cells, hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), and endothelial cells, have been explored for hemophilia gene therapy. Adeno-associated virus (AAV)-based and lentiviral vectors are among the most promising vectors for hemophilia gene therapy. Stable correction of the bleeding phenotypes in hemophilia A and B was achieved in murine and canine models, and these promising preclinical studies prompted clinical trials in patients suffering from severe hemophilia. These studies recently resulted in the first demonstration that long-term expression of therapeutic FIX levels could be achieved in patients undergoing gene therapy. Despite this progress, there are still a number of hurdles that need to be overcome. In particular, the FIX levels obtained were insufficient to prevent bleeding induced by trauma or injury. Moreover, the gene-modified cells in these patients can become potential targets for immune destruction by effector T cells, specific for the AAV vector antigens. Consequently, more efficacious approaches are needed to achieve full hemostatic correction and to ultimately establish a cure for hemophilia A and B.

  11. Gene Therapy: Implications for Craniofacial Regeneration

    PubMed Central

    Scheller, Erica L.; Villa-Diaz, Luis G; Krebsbach, Paul H.

    2011-01-01

    Gene therapy in the craniofacial region provides a unique tool for delivery of DNA to coordinate protein production in both time and space. The drive to bring this technology to the clinic is derived from the fact that over 85% of the global population may at one time require repair or replacement of a craniofacial structure. This need ranges from mild tooth decay and tooth loss to temporomandibular joint disorders and large-scale reconstructive surgery. Our ability to insert foreign DNA into a host cell has been developing since early uses of gene therapy to alter bacterial properties for waste cleanup in the 1980s followed by successful human clinical trials in the 1990s to treat severe combined immunodeficiency. In the past twenty years the emerging field of craniofacial tissue engineering has adopted these techniques to enhance regeneration of mineralized tissues, salivary gland, periodontium, and to reduce tumor burden of head and neck squamous cell carcinoma. Studies are currently pursuing research on both biomaterial-mediated gene delivery as well as more clinically efficacious, though potentially more hazardous, viral methods. Though hundreds of gene therapy clinical trials have taken place in the past twenty years, we must still work to ensure an ideal safety profile for each gene and delivery method combination. With adequate genotoxicity testing, we can expect gene therapy to augment protein delivery strategies and potentially allow for tissue-specific targeting, delivery of multiple signals, and increased spatial and temporal control with the goal of natural tissue replacement in the craniofacial complex. PMID:22337437

  12. Regulatory aspects for translating gene therapy research into the clinic.

    PubMed

    Laurencot, Carolyn M; Ruppel, Sheryl

    2009-01-01

    Gene therapy products are highly regulated, therefore moving a promising candidate from the laboratory into the clinic can present unique challenges. Success can only be achieved by proper planning and communication within the clinical development team, as well as consultation with the regulatory scientists who will eventually review the clinical plan. Regulators should not be considered as obstacles but rather as collaborators whose advice can significantly expedite the product development. Sound scientific data is required and reviewed by the regulatory agencies to determine whether the potential benefit to the patient population outweighs the risk. Therefore, compliance with Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) and Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) principles to ensure quality, safety, purity, and potency of the product, and to establish "proof of concept" for efficacy, and for safety information, respectively, is essential. The design and conduct of the clinical trial must adhere to Good Clinical Practice (GCP) principals. The clinical protocol should contain adequate rationale, supported by nonclinical data, to justify the starting dose and regimen, and adequate safety monitoring based on the patient population and the anticipated toxicities. Proper review and approval of gene therapy clinical studies by numerous committees, and regulatory agencies before and throughout the study allows for ongoing risk assessment of these novel and innovative products. The ethical conduct of clinical trials must be a priority for all clinical investigators and sponsors. As history has shown us, only a few fatal mistakes can dramatically alter the regulation of investigational products for all individuals involved in gene therapy clinical research, and further delay the advancement of gene therapy to licensed medicinal products.

  13. Regulation of cellular therapy in Australia.

    PubMed

    Trickett, Annette E; Wall, Dominic M

    2011-10-01

    Use of cellular products for therapeutic purposes has predominantly been unregulated in Australia until recently. Transplant of haemopoietic progenitor cells (HPC) for bone marrow regeneration is now a routine treatment for many disorders with an established mechanism of facility accreditation. However, other cellular therapies do not have any form of accreditation, are not well evaluated and may be associated with significant risks. On 31 May 2011 the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) implemented a long heralded regulatory biologicals framework for cell and tissue based therapies. The framework currently excludes human HPC, organs for direct transplantation and reproductive materials which are already covered by various forms of existing peer review and accreditation. This new framework is a practical approach for applying regulation based on the risk of the product to the recipient with four classes of product. Class 1 is reserved for the least regulated products and currently does not contain any proposed products. Class 2 will be for minimally manipulated products which will only require manufacturing compliance and evaluation against product and other mandatory standards before entry onto the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). Class 3 and 4 products will be more than minimally manipulated and these cells and tissues may be used in a non-homologous manner. Class 3 and 4 products will represent a spectrum of risk where Class 4 therapies will represent the highest potential risk to the recipient, with the same requirements for Class 2 approvals but with additional requirements for comprehensive evaluation of a dossier for quality, safety and efficacy of the product. The extent of this quality, safety and efficacy data will depend upon the nature of the product and its associated risks, but will be more comprehensive for Class 4 as opposed to Class 3 products. The only truly contentious feature of this framework is the extremely high cost for

  14. Ten years of gene therapy for primary immune deficiencies.

    PubMed

    Aiuti, Alessandro; Roncarolo, Maria Grazia

    2009-01-01

    Gene therapy with hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) is an attractive therapeutic strategy for several forms of primary immunodeficiencies. Current approaches are based on ex vivo gene transfer of the therapeutic gene into autologous HSC by vector-mediated gene transfer. In the past decade, substantial progress has been achieved in the treatment of severe combined immundeficiencies (SCID)-X1, adenosine deaminase (ADA)-deficient SCID, and chronic granulomatous disease (CGD). Results of the SCID gene therapy trials have shown long-term restoration of immune competence and clinical benefit in over 30 patients. The inclusion of reduced-dose conditioning in the ADA-SCID has allowed the engraftment of multipotent gene-corrected HSC at substantial level. In the CGD trial significant engraftment and transgene expression were observed, but the therapeutic effect was transient. The occurrence of adverse events related to insertional mutagenesis in the SCID-X1 and CGD trial has highlighted the limitations of current retroviral vector technology. For future applications the risk-benefit evaluation should include the type of vector employed, the disease background and the nature of the transgene. The use of self-inactivating lentiviral vectors will provide significant advantages in terms of natural gene regulation and reduction in the potential for adverse mutagenic events. Following recent advances in preclinical studies, lentiviral vectors are now being translated into new clinical approaches, such as Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome.

  15. Engineered CRISPR Systems for Next Generation Gene Therapies.

    PubMed

    Pineda, Michael; Moghadam, Farzaneh; Ebrahimkhani, Mo R; Kiani, Samira

    2017-09-15

    An ideal in vivo gene therapy platform provides safe, reprogrammable, and precise strategies which modulate cell and tissue gene regulatory networks with a high temporal and spatial resolution. Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), a bacterial adoptive immune system, and its CRISPR-associated protein 9 (Cas9), have gained attention for the ability to target and modify DNA sequences on demand with unprecedented flexibility and precision. The precision and programmability of Cas9 is derived from its complexation with a guide-RNA (gRNA) that is complementary to a desired genomic sequence. CRISPR systems open-up widespread applications including genetic disease modeling, functional screens, and synthetic gene regulation. The plausibility of in vivo genetic engineering using CRISPR has garnered significant traction as a next generation in vivo therapeutic. However, there are hurdles that need to be addressed before CRISPR-based strategies are fully implemented. Some key issues center on the controllability of the CRISPR platform, including minimizing genomic-off target effects and maximizing in vivo gene editing efficiency, in vivo cellular delivery, and spatial-temporal regulation. The modifiable components of CRISPR systems: Cas9 protein, gRNA, delivery platform, and the form of CRISPR system delivered (DNA, RNA, or ribonucleoprotein) have recently been engineered independently to design a better genome engineering toolbox. This review focuses on evaluating CRISPR potential as a next generation in vivo gene therapy platform and discusses bioengineering advancements that can address challenges associated with clinical translation of this emerging technology.

  16. Progress in gene targeting and gene therapy for retinitis pigmentosa

    SciTech Connect

    Farrar, G.J.; Humphries, M.M.; Erven, A.

    1994-09-01

    Previously, we localized disease genes involved in retinitis pigmentosa (RP), an inherited retinal degeneration, close to the rhodopsin and peripherin genes on 3q and 6p. Subsequently, we and others identified mutations in these genes in RP patients. Currently animal models for human retinopathies are being generated using gene targeting by homologous recombination in embryonic stem (ES) cells. Genomic clones for retinal genes including rhodopsin and peripherin have been obtained from a phage library carrying mouse DNA isogenic with the ES cell line (CC1.2). The peripherin clone has been sequenced to establish the genomic structure of the mouse gene. Targeting vectors for rhodopsin and peripherin including a neomycin cassette for positive selection and thymidine kinase genes enabling selection against random intergrants are under construction. Progress in vector construction will be presented. Simultaneously we are developing systems for delivery of gene therapies to retinal tissues utilizing replication-deficient adenovirus (Ad5). Efficacy of infection subsequent to various methods of intraocular injection and with varying viral titers is being assayed using an adenovirus construct containing a CMV promoter LacZ fusion as reporter and the range of tissues infected and the level of duration of LacZ expression monitored. Viral constructs with the LacZ reporter gene under the control of retinal specific promoters such as rhodopsin and IRBP cloned into pXCJL.1 are under construction. An update on developments in photoreceptor cell-directed expression of virally delivered genes will be presented.

  17. Regulation of Flagellar Gene Expression in Bacteria.

    PubMed

    Osterman, I A; Dikhtyar, Yu Yu; Bogdanov, A A; Dontsova, O A; Sergiev, P V

    2015-11-01

    The flagellum of a bacterium is a supramolecular structure of extreme complexity comprising simultaneously both a unique system of protein transport and a molecular machine that enables the bacterial cell movement. The cascade of expression of genes encoding flagellar components is closely coordinated with the steps of molecular machine assembly, constituting an amazing regulatory system. Data on structure, assembly, and regulation of flagellar gene expression are summarized in this review. The regulatory mechanisms and correlation of the process of regulation of gene expression and flagellum assembly known from the literature are described.

  18. Noninvasive tracking of gene transcript and neuroprotection after gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Ren, J; Chen, Y I; Liu, C H; Chen, P-C; Prentice, H; Wu, J-Y; Liu, P K

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy holds exceptional potential for translational medicine by improving the products of defective genes in diseases and/or providing necessary biologics from endogenous sources during recovery processes. However, validating methods for the delivery, distribution and expression of the exogenous genes from such therapy can generally not be applicable to monitor effects over the long term because they are invasive. We report here that human granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (hG-CSF) complimentary DNA (cDNA) encoded in self-complementary adeno-associated virus-type 2 adeno-associated virus, as delivered through eye drops at multiple time points after cerebral ischemia using bilateral carotid occlusion for 60 min (BCAO-60) led to significant reduction in mortality rates, cerebral atrophy and neurological deficits in C57black6 mice. Most importantly, we validated hG-CSF cDNA expression using translatable magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in living brains. This noninvasive approach for monitoring exogenous gene expression in the brains has potential for great impact in the area of experimental gene therapy in animal models of heart attack, stroke, Alzheimer's dementia, Parkinson's disorder and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and the translation of such techniques to emergency medicine.

  19. Fetal muscle gene therapy/gene delivery in large animals.

    PubMed

    Abi-Nader, Khalil N; David, Anna L

    2011-01-01

    Gene delivery to the fetal muscles is a potential strategy for the early treatment of muscular dystrophies. In utero muscle gene therapy can also be used to treat other genetic disorders such as hemophilia, where the missing clotting proteins may be secreted from the treated muscle. In the past few years, studies in small animal models have raised the hopes that a phenotypic cure can be obtained after fetal application of gene therapy. Studies of efficacy and safety in large animals are, however, essential before clinical application can be considered in the human fetus. For this reason, the development of clinically applicable strategies for the delivery of gene therapy to the fetal muscles is of prime importance. In this chapter, we describe the protocols for in utero ultrasound-guided gene delivery to the ovine fetal muscle in early gestation. In particular, procedures to inject skeletal muscle groups such as the thigh and thoracic musculature and targeting the diaphragm in the fetus are described in detail.

  20. Newer gene editing technologies toward HIV gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Manjunath, N; Yi, Guohua; Dang, Ying; Shankar, Premlata

    2013-11-14

    Despite the great success of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in ameliorating the course of HIV infection, alternative therapeutic approaches are being pursued because of practical problems associated with life-long therapy. The eradication of HIV in the so-called "Berlin patient" who received a bone marrow transplant from a CCR5-negative donor has rekindled interest in genome engineering strategies to achieve the same effect. Precise gene editing within the cells is now a realistic possibility with recent advances in understanding the DNA repair mechanisms, DNA interaction with transcription factors and bacterial defense mechanisms. Within the past few years, four novel technologies have emerged that can be engineered for recognition of specific DNA target sequences to enable site-specific gene editing: Homing Endonuclease, ZFN, TALEN, and CRISPR/Cas9 system. The most recent CRISPR/Cas9 system uses a short stretch of complementary RNA bound to Cas9 nuclease to recognize and cleave target DNA, as opposed to the previous technologies that use DNA binding motifs of either zinc finger proteins or transcription activator-like effector molecules fused to an endonuclease to mediate sequence-specific DNA cleavage. Unlike RNA interference, which requires the continued presence of effector moieties to maintain gene silencing, the newer technologies allow permanent disruption of the targeted gene after a single treatment. Here, we review the applications, limitations and future prospects of novel gene-editing strategies for use as HIV therapy.

  1. Novel molecular approaches to cystic fibrosis gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Tim W. R.; Matthews, David A.; Blair, G. Eric

    2005-01-01

    Gene therapy holds promise for the treatment of a range of inherited diseases, such as cystic fibrosis. However, efficient delivery and expression of the therapeutic transgene at levels sufficient to result in phenotypic correction of cystic fibrosis pulmonary disease has proved elusive. There are many reasons for this lack of progress, both macroscopically in terms of airway defence mechanisms and at the molecular level with regard to effective cDNA delivery. This review of approaches to cystic fibrosis gene therapy covers these areas in detail and highlights recent progress in the field. For gene therapy to be effective in patients with cystic fibrosis, the cDNA encoding the cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator protein must be delivered effectively to the nucleus of the epithelial cells lining the bronchial tree within the lungs. Expression of the transgene must be maintained at adequate levels for the lifetime of the patient, either by repeat dosage of the vector or by targeting airway stem cells. Clinical trials of gene therapy for cystic fibrosis have demonstrated proof of principle, but gene expression has been limited to 30 days at best. Results suggest that viral vectors such as adenovirus and adeno-associated virus are unsuited to repeat dosing, as the immune response reduces the effectiveness of each subsequent dose. Nonviral approaches, such as cationic liposomes, appear more suited to repeat dosing, but have been less effective. Current work regarding non-viral gene delivery is now focused on understanding the mechanisms involved in cell entry, endosomal escape and nuclear import of the transgene. There is now increasing evidence to suggest that additional ligands that facilitate endosomal escape or contain a nuclear localization signal may enhance liposome-mediated gene delivery. Much progress in this area has been informed by advances in our understanding of the mechanisms by which viruses deliver their genomes to the nuclei of host

  2. Turning the gene tap off; implications of regulating gene expression for cancer therapeutics

    PubMed Central

    Curtin, James F.; Candolfi, Marianela; Xiong, Weidong; Lowenstein, Pedro R.; Castro, Maria G.

    2008-01-01

    Cancer poses a tremendous therapeutic challenge worldwide, highlighting the critical need for developing novel therapeutics. A promising cancer treatment modality is gene therapy, which is a form of molecular medicine designed to introduce into target cells genetic material with therapeutic intent. Anticancer gene therapy strategies currently used in preclinical models, and in some cases in the clinic, include proapoptotic genes, oncolytic/replicative vectors, conditional cytotoxic approaches, inhibition of angiogenesis, inhibition of growth factor signaling, inactivation of oncogenes, inhibition of tumor invasion and stimulation of the immune system. The translation of these novel therapeutic modalities from the preclinical setting to the clinic has been driven by encouraging preclinical efficacy data and advances in gene delivery technologies. One area of intense research involves the ability to accurately regulate the levels of therapeutic gene expression to achieve enhanced efficacy and provide the capability to switch gene expression off completely if adverse side effects should arise. This feature could also be implemented to switch gene expression off when a successful therapeutic outcome ensues. Here, we will review recent developments related to the engineering of transcriptional switches within gene delivery systems, which could be implemented in clinical gene therapy applications directed at the treatment of cancer. PMID:18347132

  3. Alternative Strategies for Gene Therapy of Hemophilia

    PubMed Central

    Montgomery, Robert R.; Shi, Qizhen

    2012-01-01

    Hemophilia A and B are monogenic disorders that were felt to be ideal targets for initiation of gene therapy. Although the first hemophilia gene therapy trial has been over 10 years ago, few trials are currently actively recruiting. Although preclinical studies in animals were promising, levels achieved in humans did not achieve long-term expression at adequate levels to achieve cures. Transplantation as a source of cellular replacement therapy for both hemophilia A and B have been successful following liver transplantation in which the recipient produces normal levels of either factor VIII (FVIII) or factor IX (FIX). Most of these transplants have been conducted for the treatment of liver failure rather than for “curing” hemophilia. There are a variety of new strategies for delivering the missing clotting factor through ectopic expression of the deficient protein. One approach uses hematopoietic stem cells using either a nonspecific promoter or using a lineage-specific promoter. An alternative strategy includes enhanced expression in endothelial cells or blood-outgrowth endothelial cells. An additional approach includes the expression of FVIII or FIX intraarticularly to mitigate the intraarticular bleeding that causes much of the disability for hemophilia patients. Because activated factor VII (FVIIa) can be used to treat patients with inhibitory antibodies to replacement clotting factors, preclinical gene therapy has been performed using platelet- or liver-targeted FVIIa expression. All of these newer approaches are just beginning to be explored in large animal models. Whereas improved recombinant replacement products continue to be the hallmark of hemophilia therapy, the frequency of replacement therapy is beginning to be addressed through longer-acting replacement products. A safe cure of hemophilia is still the desired goal, but many barriers must still be overcome. PMID:21239794

  4. Alternative strategies for gene therapy of hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Robert R; Shi, Qizhen

    2010-01-01

    Hemophilia A and B are monogenic disorders that were felt to be ideal targets for initiation of gene therapy. Although the first hemophilia gene therapy trial has been over 10 years ago, few trials are currently actively recruiting. Although preclinical studies in animals were promising, levels achieved in humans did not achieve long-term expression at adequate levels to achieve cures. Transplantation as a source of cellular replacement therapy for both hemophilia A and B have been successful following liver transplantation in which the recipient produces normal levels of either factor VIII (FVIII) or factor IX (FIX). Most of these transplants have been conducted for the treatment of liver failure rather than for "curing" hemophilia. There are a variety of new strategies for delivering the missing clotting factor through ectopic expression of the deficient protein. One approach uses hematopoietic stem cells using either a nonspecific promoter or using a lineage-specific promoter. An alternative strategy includes enhanced expression in endothelial cells or blood-outgrowth endothelial cells. An additional approach includes the expression of FVIII or FIX intraarticularly to mitigate the intraarticular bleeding that causes much of the disability for hemophilia patients. Because activated factor VII (FVIIa) can be used to treat patients with inhibitory antibodies to replacement clotting factors, preclinical gene therapy has been performed using platelet- or liver-targeted FVIIa expression. All of these newer approaches are just beginning to be explored in large animal models. Whereas improved recombinant replacement products continue to be the hallmark of hemophilia therapy, the frequency of replacement therapy is beginning to be addressed through longer-acting replacement products. A safe cure of hemophilia is still the desired goal, but many barriers must still be overcome.

  5. Gene Therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Ramos, Julian; Chamberlain, Jeffrey S

    2015-01-01

    Introduction Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a relatively common inherited disorder caused by defective expression of the protein dystrophin. The most direct approach to treating this disease would be to restore dystrophin production in muscle. Recent progress has greatly increased the prospects for successful gene therapy of DMD, and here we summarize the most promising developments. Areas Covered Gene transfer using vectors derived from adeno-associated virus (AAV) has emerged as a promising method to restore dystrophin production in muscles bodywide, and represents a treatment option applicable to all DMD patients. Using information gleaned from PubMed searches of the literature, attendance at scientific conferences and results from our own lab, we provide an overview of the potential for gene therapy of DMD using AAV vectors including a summary of promising developments and issues that need to be resolved prior to large-scale therapeutic implementation. Expert Opinion Of the many approaches being pursued to treat DMD and BMD, gene therapy based on AAV-mediated delivery of microdystrophin is the most direct and promising method to treat the cause of the disorder. The major challenges to this approach are ensuring that microdystrophin can be delivered safely and efficiently without eliciting an immune response. PMID:26594599

  6. Tonicity-regulated gene expression.

    PubMed

    Ferraris, Joan D; Burg, Maurice B

    2007-01-01

    Hypertonicity activates several different transcription factors, including TonEBP/OREBP, that in turn increase transcription of numerous genes. Hypertonicity elevates TonEBP/OREBP transcriptional activity by moving it into the nucleus, where it binds to its cognate DNA element (ORE), and by increasing its transactivational activity. This chapter presents protocols for measuring the transcriptional activity of TonEBP/OREBP and determining its subcellular localization, its binding to OREs, and activity of its transactivation domain.

  7. Gene Regulation by Cytokinin in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, Wolfram G.; Ramireddy, Eswar; Heyl, Alexander; Schmülling, Thomas

    2011-01-01

    The plant hormone cytokinin realizes at least part of its signaling output through the regulation of gene expression. A great part of the early transcriptional regulation is mediated by type-B response regulators, which are transcription factors of the MYB family. Other transcription factors, such as the cytokinin response factors of the AP2/ERF family, have also been shown to be involved in this process. Additional transcription factors mediate distinct parts of the cytokinin response through tissue- and cell-specific downstream transcriptional cascades. In Arabidopsis, only a single cytokinin response element, to which type-B response regulators bind, has been clearly proven so far, which has 5′-GAT(T/C)-3′ as a core sequence. This motif has served to construct a synthetic cytokinin-sensitive two-component system response element, which is useful for monitoring the cellular cytokinin status. Insight into the extent of transcriptional regulation has been gained by genome-wide gene expression analyses following cytokinin treatment and from plants having an altered cytokinin content or signaling. This review presents a meta analysis of such microarray data resulting in a core list of cytokinin response genes. Genes encoding type-A response regulators displayed the most stable response to cytokinin, but a number of cytokinin metabolism genes (CKX4, CKX5, CYP735A2, UGT76C2) also belong to them, indicating homeostatic mechanisms operating at the transcriptional level. The cytokinin core response genes are also the target of other hormones as well as biotic and abiotic stresses, documenting crosstalk of the cytokinin system with other hormonal and environmental signaling pathways. The multiple links of cytokinin to diverse functions, ranging from control of meristem activity, hormonal crosstalk, nutrient acquisition, and various stress responses, are also corroborated by a compilation of genes that have been repeatedly found by independent gene expression profiling

  8. Engineering HSV-1 vectors for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Goins, William F; Huang, Shaohua; Cohen, Justus B; Glorioso, Joseph C

    2014-01-01

    Virus vectors have been employed as gene transfer vehicles for various preclinical and clinical gene therapy applications, and with the approval of Glybera (alipogene tiparvovec) as the first gene therapy product as a standard medical treatment (Yla-Herttuala, Mol Ther 20: 1831-1832, 2013), gene therapy has reached the status of being a part of standard patient care. Replication-competent herpes simplex virus (HSV) vectors that replicate specifically in actively dividing tumor cells have been used in Phase I-III human trials in patients with glioblastoma multiforme, a fatal form of brain cancer, and in malignant melanoma. In fact, T-VEC (talimogene laherparepvec, formerly known as OncoVex GM-CSF) displayed efficacy in a recent Phase III trial when compared to standard GM-CSF treatment alone (Andtbacka et al. J Clin Oncol 31: sLBA9008, 2013) and may soon become the second FDA-approved gene therapy product used in standard patient care. In addition to the replication-competent oncolytic HSV vectors like T-VEC, replication-defective HSV vectors have been employed in Phase I-II human trials and have been explored as delivery vehicles for disorders such as pain, neuropathy, and other neurodegenerative conditions. Research during the last decade on the development of HSV vectors has resulted in the engineering of recombinant vectors that are totally replication defective, nontoxic, and capable of long-term transgene expression in neurons. This chapter describes methods for the construction of recombinant genomic HSV vectors based on the HSV-1 replication-defective vector backbones, steps in their purification, and their small-scale production for use in cell culture experiments as well as preclinical animal studies.

  9. AAV-mediated gene therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Couto, Linda B; Pierce, Glenn F

    2003-10-01

    Gene therapy for hemophilia has been contemplated since the coagulation Factor genes responsible for the disease were cloned 20 years ago. Multiple approaches towards the delivery of Factors VIII or IX, the defective genes in the most common forms of hemophilia, have resulted in positive results in animals, and largely equivocal results in human clinical testing. Use of vectors based on adeno-associated virus has led to robust and sustained cures in hemophilic mice and dogs, and intriguing preliminary results in small or ongoing clinical trials. As more clinical experience is gained, solving delivery issues will be of paramount importance and will lead to more clinical success. This success will permit hemophilia to be cured following a single injection of the normal gene.

  10. Methods to monitor gene therapy with molecular imaging.

    PubMed

    Waerzeggers, Yannic; Monfared, Parisa; Viel, Thomas; Winkeler, Alexandra; Voges, Jürgen; Jacobs, Andreas H

    2009-06-01

    Recent progress in scientific and clinical research has made gene therapy a promising option for efficient and targeted treatment of several inherited and acquired disorders. One of the most critical issues for ensuring success of gene-based therapies is the development of technologies for non-invasive monitoring of the distribution and kinetics of vector-mediated gene expression. In recent years many molecular imaging techniques for safe, repeated and high-resolution in vivo imaging of gene expression have been developed and successfully used in animals and humans. In this review molecular imaging techniques for monitoring of gene therapy are described and specific use of these methods in the different steps of a gene therapy protocol from gene delivery to assessment of therapy response is illustrated. Linking molecular imaging (MI) to gene therapy will eventually help to improve the efficacy and safety of current gene therapy protocols for human application and support future individualized patient treatment.

  11. [New possibilities will open up in human gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Portin, Petter

    2016-01-01

    Gene therapy is divided into somatic and germ line therapy. The latter involves reproductive cells or their stem cells, and its results are heritable. The effects of somatic gene therapy are generally restricted to a single tissue of the patient in question. Until now, all gene therapies in the world have belonged to the regime of somatic therapy, germ line therapy having been a theoretical possibility only. Very recently, however, a method has been developed which is applicable to germ line therapy as well. In addition to technical challenges, severe ethical problems are associated with germ line therapy, demanding opinion statement.

  12. Down-regulation of collagen synthesis and matrix metalloproteinase expression in myofibroblasts from Dupuytren nodule using adenovirus-mediated relaxin gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Kang, Young-Mi; Choi, Yun-Rak; Yun, Chae-Ok; Park, Jin-Oh; Suk, Kyung-Soo; Kim, Hak-Sun; Park, Moon-Soo; Lee, Byung-Ho; Lee, Hwan-Mo; Moon, Seong-Hwan

    2014-04-01

    Dupuytren's disease is a fibroproliferative connective tissue disorder characterized by contracture of the palmer fascia of the hand. Relaxin (RLN) is a multifunctional factor which contributes to the remodeling of the pelvic ligament by inhibiting fibrosis and inflammatory activities. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of the RLN gene on the inhibition of fibrosis in myofibroblastic cells. Myofibroblast cells with adenovirus LacZ (Ad-LacZ) as a marker gene or adenovirus relaxin (Ad-RLN) as therapeutic gene showed transgene expressions in beta-galactosidase assay and Western blot analysis. Myofibroblastic cells with Ad-RLN demonstrated a 22% and 48% reduction in collagen I and III mRNA expressions respectively, a 50% decrease in MMP-1, 70% decrease in MMP-2, 80% decrease in MMP-9, and a 15% reduction in MMP-13 protein expression compared with cultures with viral control and saline control. In addition, myofibroblastic cells with Ad-RLN showed a 40% decrease in TIMP 1 and a 15% increase in TIMP 3 protein expression at 48 h compared to cultures with viral control and saline control. Also, myofibroblastic cell with Ad-RLN demonstrated a 74% inhibition of fibronectin and a 52% decrease in total collagen synthesis at 48 h compared with cultures with viral control and saline control. In conclusion, the RLN gene render antifibrogenic effect on myofibroblastic cells from Dupuytren's nodule via direct inhibition of collagen synthesis not through collagenolytic pathway such as MMP-1, -13, TIMP 1, and 3. Therefore relaxin can be an alternative therapeutic strategy in initial stage of Dupuytren's disease by its antifibrogenic effect. © 2013 Orthopaedic Research Society. Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Gene therapy for vision loss -- recent developments.

    PubMed

    Stieger, Knut; Lorenz, Birgit

    2010-11-01

    Retinal gene therapy mediated by adeno-associated virus (AAV) based gene transfer was recently proven to improve photoreceptor function in one form of inherited retinal blinding disorder associated with mutations in the RPE65 gene. Several clinical trials are currently ongoing, and more than 30 patients have been treated to date. Even though only a very limited number of patients will greatly benefit from this still experimental treatment protocol, the technique itself has been shown to be safe and will likely be used in other retinal disorders in the near future. A canine model for achromatopsia has been treated successfully as well as mouse models for different forms of Leber congenital amaurosis (LCA). For patients with autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (adRP), a combined gene knockdown and gene addition therapy is being developed using RNA interference to block mRNA of the mutant allele. For those patients suffering from RP with unknown mutations, an AAV based transfer of bacterial forms of rhodopsin in the central retina might be an option to reactivate residual cones in the future.

  14. Is cancer gene therapy an empty suit?

    PubMed Central

    Brenner, Malcolm K; Gottschalk, Stephen; Leen, Ann M; Vera, Juan F

    2014-01-01

    Gene therapy as a treatment for cancer is regarded as high in promise, but low in delivery, a deficiency that has become more obvious with ever-increasing reports of the successful correction of monogenic disorders by this approach. We review the commercial and scientific obstacles that have led to these delays and describe how they are progressively being overcome. Recent and striking successes and correspondingly increased commercial involvement suggest that gene transfer could finally become a powerful method for development of safe and effective cancer therapeutic drugs. PMID:24079872

  15. Gene therapy: X-SCID transgene leukaemogenicity.

    PubMed

    Thrasher, Adrian J; Gaspar, H Bobby; Baum, Christopher; Modlich, Ute; Schambach, Axel; Candotti, Fabio; Otsu, Makoto; Sorrentino, Brian; Scobie, Linda; Cameron, Ewan; Blyth, Karen; Neil, Jim; Abina, Salima Hacein-Bey; Cavazzana-Calvo, Marina; Fischer, Alain

    2006-09-21

    Gene therapy has been remarkably effective for the immunological reconstitution of patients with severe combined immune deficiency, but the occurrence of leukaemia in a few patients has stimulated debate about the safety of the procedure and the mechanisms of leukaemogenesis. Woods et al. forced high expression of the corrective therapeutic gene IL2RG, which encodes the gamma-chain of the interleukin-2 receptor, in a mouse model of the disease and found that tumours appeared in a proportion of cases. Here we show that transgenic IL2RG does not necessarily have potent intrinsic oncogenic properties, and argue that the interpretation of this observation with respect to human trials is overstated.

  16. Cocaine hydrolase gene therapy for cocaine abuse

    PubMed Central

    Brimijoin, Stephen; Gao, Yang

    2013-01-01

    Rapid progress in the past decade with re-engineering of human plasma butyrylcholinesterase has led to enzymes that destroy cocaine so efficiently that they prevent or interrupt drug actions in the CNS even though confined to the blood stream. Over the same time window, improved gene-transfer technology has made it possible to deliver such enzymes by endogenous gene transduction at high levels for periods of a year or longer after a single treatment. This article reviews recent advances in this field and considers prospects for development of a robust therapy aimed at aiding recovering drug users avoid addiction relapse. PMID:22300095

  17. Prostaglandin Pathway Gene Therapy for Sustained Reduction of Intraocular Pressure

    PubMed Central

    Barraza, Román A; McLaren, Jay W; Poeschla, Eric M

    2009-01-01

    Cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) is a rate-limiting enzyme in prostaglandin (PG) biosynthesis. In the eye, loss of COX-2 expression in aqueous humor–secreting cells has been associated with primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG). Reduction of intraocular pressure (IOP) is the main treatment goal in this disease. We used lentiviral vectors to stably express COX-2 and other PG biosynthesis and response transgenes in the ciliary body epithelium and trabecular meshwork (TM), the ocular suborgans that produce aqueous humor and regulate its outflow, respectively. We show that robust ectopic COX-2 expression and PG production require COX-2 complementary DNA (cDNA) sequence optimization. When COX-2 expression was coupled with a similarly optimized synthetic PGF2α receptor transgene to enable downstream signaling, gene therapy produced substantial and sustained reductions in IOP in a large animal model, the domestic cat. This study provides the first gene therapy for correcting the main cause of glaucoma. PMID:19953083

  18. Targeting MicroRNAs in Cancer Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Ji, Weidan; Sun, Bin; Su, Changqing

    2017-01-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a kind of conserved small non-coding RNAs that participate in regulating gene expression by targeting multiple molecules. Early studies have shown that the expression of miRNAs changes significantly in different tumor tissues and cancer cell lines. It is well acknowledged that such variation is involved in almost all biological processes, including cell proliferation, mobility, survival and differentiation. Increasing experimental data indicate that miRNA dysregulation is a biomarker of several pathological conditions including cancer, and that miRNA can exert a causal role, as oncogenes or tumor suppressor genes, in different steps of the tumorigenic process. Anticancer therapies based on miRNAs are currently being developed with a goal to improve outcomes of cancer treatment. In our present study, we review the function of miRNAs in tumorigenesis and development, and discuss the latest clinical applications and strategies of therapy targeting miRNAs in cancer. PMID:28075356

  19. Pluripotent Stem Cells and Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Simara, Pavel; Motl, Jason A.; Kaufman, Dan S.

    2013-01-01

    Human pluripotent stem cells represent an accessible cell source for novel cell-based clinical research and therapies. With the realization of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), it is possible to produce almost any desired cell type from any patient's cells. Current developments in gene modification methods have opened the possibility for creating genetically corrected human iPSCs for certain genetic diseases that could be used later in autologous transplantation. Promising preclinical studies have demonstrated correction of disease-causing mutations in a number of hematological, neuronal and muscular disorders. This review aims to summarize these recent advances with a focus on iPSC generation techniques, as well as gene modification methods. We will then further discuss some of the main obstacles remaining to be overcome before successful application of human pluripotent stem cell-based therapy arrives in the clinic and what the future of stem cell research may look like. PMID:23353080

  20. Targeting tumor suppressor genes for cancer therapy.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yunhua; Hu, Xiaoxiao; Han, Cecil; Wang, Liana; Zhang, Xinna; He, Xiaoming; Lu, Xiongbin

    2015-12-01

    Cancer drugs are broadly classified into two categories: cytotoxic chemotherapies and targeted therapies that specifically modulate the activity of one or more proteins involved in cancer. Major advances have been achieved in targeted cancer therapies in the past few decades, which is ascribed to the increasing understanding of molecular mechanisms for cancer initiation and progression. Consequently, monoclonal antibodies and small molecules have been developed to interfere with a specific molecular oncogenic target. Targeting gain-of-function mutations, in general, has been productive. However, it has been a major challenge to use standard pharmacologic approaches to target loss-of-function mutations of tumor suppressor genes. Novel approaches, including synthetic lethality and collateral vulnerability screens, are now being developed to target gene defects in p53, PTEN, and BRCA1/2. Here, we review and summarize the recent findings in cancer genomics, drug development, and molecular cancer biology, which show promise in targeting tumor suppressors in cancer therapeutics.

  1. Cardiac gene therapy: from concept to reality.

    PubMed

    Kratlian, Razmig Garo; Hajjar, Roger J

    2012-03-01

    Heart failure is increasing in incidence throughout the world, especially in industrialized countries. Although the current therapeutic modalities have been successful in stabilizing the course of heart failure, morbidity and mortality remain quite high and there remains a great need for innovative breakthroughs that will offer new treatment strategies for patients with advanced forms of the disease. The past few years have witnessed a greater understanding of the molecular underpinnings of the failing heart, paving the way for novel strategies in modulating the cellular environment. As such, gene therapy has recently emerged as a powerful tool offering the promise of a new paradigm for alleviating heart failure. Current gene therapy research for heart failure is focused on exploring potential cellular targets and preclinical and clinical studies are ongoing toward the realization of this goal. Efforts also include the development of sophisticated viral vectors and vector delivery methods for efficient transduction of cardiomyocytes.

  2. Advances of gene therapy for primary immunodeficiencies

    PubMed Central

    Candotti, Fabio

    2016-01-01

    In the recent past, the gene therapy field has witnessed a remarkable series of successes, many of which have involved primary immunodeficiency diseases, such as X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency, adenosine deaminase deficiency, chronic granulomatous disease, and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome. While such progress has widened the choice of therapeutic options in some specific cases of primary immunodeficiency, much remains to be done to extend the geographical availability of such an advanced approach and to increase the number of diseases that can be targeted. At the same time, emerging technologies are stimulating intensive investigations that may lead to the application of precise genetic editing as the next form of gene therapy for these and other human genetic diseases. PMID:27508076

  3. Regulation of gene expression by Goodwin's loop with many genes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sielewiesiuk, Jan; Łopaciuk, Agata

    2012-01-01

    The paper presents a simple analysis of a long Goodwin's loop containing many genes. The genes form a closed series. The rate of transcription of any gene is up or down regulated by theprotein product of the preceding gene. We describe the loop with a system of ordinary differential equations of order s. Oscillatory solutions of the system are possible at the odd number of repressions and any number of inductions if the product of all Hill's coefficients, related to both repressions and inductions, is larger than:

  4. The European hospital exemption clause-new option for gene therapy?

    PubMed

    Buchholz, Christian J; Sanzenbacher, Ralf; Schüle, Silke

    2012-01-01

    Gene-therapy medicinal products are currently applied to patients enrolled in authorized clinical trials to demonstrate safety and efficacy. Given a positive outcome, marketing authorization can subsequently be achieved via the centralized procedure coordinated by the European Medicines Agency. With Regulation (EC) No. 1394/2007 in force, advanced therapy medicinal products, including gene- and cell-therapy products, can be excepted from the obligation of obtaining a marketing authorization via the centralized procedure under specific conditions (so-called "hospital exemption"). This hospital exemption allows the application of gene-therapy medicinal products prepared on a non-routine basis for an individual patient and used under the exclusive professional responsibility of a medical practitioner. Here, we explain the requirements to be fulfilled in order to fall under this exemption, the implementation of this regulation into the German national legislation, and its impact on gene-therapy product development in the future.

  5. Gene therapy approaches for spinal cord injury

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bright, Corinne

    As the biomedical engineering field expands, combination technologies are demonstrating enormous potential for treating human disease. In particular, intersections between the rapidly developing fields of gene therapy and tissue engineering hold promise to achieve tissue regeneration. Nonviral gene therapy uses plasmid DNA to deliver therapeutic proteins in vivo for extended periods of time. Tissue engineering employs biomedical materials, such as polymers, to support the regrowth of injured tissue. In this thesis, a combination strategy to deliver genes and drugs in a polymeric scaffold was applied to a spinal cord injury model. In order to develop a platform technology to treat spinal cord injury, several nonviral gene delivery systems and polymeric scaffolds were evaluated in vitro and in vivo. Nonviral vector trafficking was evaluated in primary neuronal culture to develop an understanding of the barriers to gene transfer in neurons and their supporting glia. Although the most efficient gene carrier in vitro differed from the optimal gene carrier in vivo, confocal and electron microscopy of these nonviral vectors provided insights into the interaction of these vectors with the nucleus. A novel pathway for delivering nanoparticles into the nuclei of neurons and Schwann cells via vesicle trafficking was observed in this study. Reporter gene expression levels were evaluated after direct and remote delivery to the spinal cord, and the optimal nonviral vector, dose, and delivery strategy were applied to deliver the gene encoding the basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) to the spinal cord. An injectable and biocompatible gel, composed of the amphiphillic polymer poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(epsilon-caprolactone)-poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG-PCL-PEG) was evaluated as a drug and gene delivery system in vitro, and combined with the optimized nonviral gene delivery system to treat spinal cord injury. Plasmid DNA encoding the bFGF gene and the therapeutic NEP1--40 peptide

  6. [The return of germline gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Jordan, Bertrand

    2015-01-01

    The recent development of a powerful and flexible genome editing technique (the CRISP-cas9 method) accelerates tremendously the production of animal models and will significantly enhance the perspectives of (somatic) gene therapy. However, it also raises a real possibility of germline modifications in humans, with therapeutic aims or for "improvement": this raises thorny ethical questions that are no longer theoretical (as in the 1990s) but will have to be faced in the very near future.

  7. Targeted Gene Therapy of Cancer: Second Amendment toward Holistic Therapy.

    PubMed

    Barar, Jaleh; Omidi, Yadollah

    2013-01-01

    It seems solid tumors are developing smart organs with specialized cells creating specified bio-territory, the so called "tumor microenvironment (TME)", in which there is reciprocal crosstalk among cancer cells, immune system cells and stromal cells. TME as an intricate milieu also consists of cancer stem cells (CSCs) that can resist against chemotherapies. In solid tumors, metabolism and vascularization appears to be aberrant and tumor interstitial fluid (TIF) functions as physiologic barrier. Thus, chemotherapy, immunotherapy and gene therapy often fail to provide cogent clinical outcomes. It looms that it is the time to accept the fact that initiation of cancer could be generation of another form of life that involves a cluster of thousands of genes, while we have failed to observe all aspects of it. Hence, the current treatment modalities need to be re-visited to cover all key aspects of disease using combination therapy based on the condition of patients. Perhaps personalized cluster of genes need to be simultaneously targeted.

  8. Sphingolipids and expression regulation of genes in cancer

    PubMed Central

    Patwardhan, Gauri A.; Liu, Yong-Yu

    2010-01-01

    Sphingolipids including glycosphingolipids have myriad effects on cell functions and affect cancer in aspects of tumorigenesis, metastasis and tumor response to treatments. Bioactive ones like ceramide, sphingosine 1-phosphate and globotriaosylceramide initiate and process cellular signaling to alter cell behaviors immediately responding to oncogenic stress or treatment challenges. Recent studies pinpoint that sphingolipid-mediated gene expression has long and profound impacts on cancer cells, and these play crucial roles in tumor progression and treatment outcome. More than ten sphingolipids and glycosphingolipids selectively mediate expressions of approximate fifty genes including c-myc, p21, c-fos, telomerase reverse transcriptase, caspase-9, Bcl-x, cyclooxygenase-2, matrix metalloproteinases, integrins, Oct-4, glucosylceramide synthase and multidrug-resistant gene 1. By diverse functions of these genes, sphingolipids enduringly affect cellular processes of mitosis, apoptosis, migration, stemness of cancer stem cells and cellular resistance to therapies. Mechanistic studies indicate that sphingolipids regulate particular gene expression by modulating phosphorylation and acetylation of proteins that serve as transcription factors (β-catenin, Sp1), repressor of transcription (histone H3), and regulators (SRp30a) in RNA splicing. Disclosing molecular mechanisms by which sphingolipids selectively regulate particular gene expression, instead of other relevant ones, requires understanding of the exact roles of individual lipid instead of a group, the signaling pathways that are implicated in and interaction with proteins or other lipids in details. These studies not only expand our knowledge of sphingolipids, but can also suggest novel targets for cancer treatments. PMID:20970453

  9. Gene Therapy in Thalassemia and Hemoglobinopathies

    PubMed Central

    Breda, Laura; Gambari, Roberto; Rivella, Stefano

    2009-01-01

    Sickle cell disease (SCD) and ß-thalassemia represent the most common hemoglobinopathies caused, respectively, by the alteration of structural features or deficient production of the ß-chain of the Hb molecule. Other hemoglobinopathies are characterized by different mutations in the α- or ß-globin genes and are associated with anemia and might require periodic or chronic blood transfusions. Therefore, ß-thalassemia, SCD and other hemoglobinopathies are excellent candidates for genetic approaches since they are monogenic disorders and, potentially, could be cured by introducing or correcting a single gene into the hematopoietic compartment or a single stem cell. Initial attempts at gene transfer of these hemoglobinopathies have proved unsuccessful due to limitations of available gene transfer vectors. With the advent of lentiviral vectors many of the initial limitations have been overcame. New approaches have also focused on targeting the specific mutation in the ß-globin genes, correcting the DNA sequence or manipulating the fate of RNA translation and splicing to restore ß-globin chain synthesis. These techniques have the potential to correct the defect into hematopoietic stem cells or be utilized to modify stem cells generated from patients affected by these disorders. This review discusses gene therapy strategies for the hemoglobinopathies, including the use of lentiviral vectors, generation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPS) cells, gene targeting, splice-switching and stop codon readthrough. PMID:21415990

  10. Amino acid regulation of gene expression.

    PubMed Central

    Fafournoux, P; Bruhat, A; Jousse, C

    2000-01-01

    The impact of nutrients on gene expression in mammals has become an important area of research. Nevertheless, the current understanding of the amino acid-dependent control of gene expression is limited. Because amino acids have multiple and important functions, their homoeostasis has to be finely maintained. However, amino-acidaemia can be affected by certain nutritional conditions or various forms of stress. It follows that mammals have to adjust several of their physiological functions involved in the adaptation to amino acid availability by regulating the expression of numerous genes. The aim of the present review is to examine the role of amino acids in regulating mammalian gene expression and protein turnover. It has been reported that some genes involved in the control of growth or amino acid metabolism are regulated by amino acid availability. For instance, limitation of several amino acids greatly increases the expression of the genes encoding insulin-like growth factor binding protein-1, CHOP (C/EBP homologous protein, where C/EBP is CCAAT/enhancer binding protein) and asparagine synthetase. Elevated mRNA levels result from both an increase in the rate of transcription and an increase in mRNA stability. Several observations suggest that the amino acid regulation of gene expression observed in mammalian cells and the general control process described in yeast share common features. Moreover, amino acid response elements have been characterized in the promoters of the CHOP and asparagine synthetase genes. Taken together, the results discussed in the present review demonstrate that amino acids, by themselves, can, in concert with hormones, play an important role in the control of gene expression. PMID:10998343

  11. Natural gene therapy in dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa.

    PubMed

    van den Akker, Peter C; Nijenhuis, Miranda; Meijer, Gonnie; Hofstra, Robert M W; Jonkman, Marcel F; Pasmooij, Anna M G

    2012-02-01

    Dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa is a genetic blistering disorder caused by mutations in the type VII collagen gene, COL7A1. In revertant mosaicism, germline mutations are corrected by somatic events resulting in a mosaic disease distribution. This "natural gene therapy" phenomenon long has been recognized in other forms of epidermolysis bullosa but only recently in dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa. We describe a 21-year-old man with recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa carrying the homozygous c.6508C>T (p.Gln2170X) nonsense mutation who reported an unaffected skin patch on his neck where blisters never had occurred. Immunofluorescent type VII collagen staining was normal in 80% of the unaffected skin biopsy; however, it was strongly reduced in the affected skin. In the unaffected skin, the somatic nucleotide substitution c.6510G>T reverted the germline nonsense codon to tyrosine (p.Gln2170Tyr), thereby restoring functional protein production. Revertant mosaicism is considered rare in recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa. However, it might be more common than previously anticipated because our patient is the third in whom revertant mosaicism was identified in a short period of time. The correction mechanism is different than that previously reported. Systematic examination of patients with recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa, therefore, will likely reveal more patients with revertant patches. This is important because the natural gene therapy phenomenon may provide opportunities for revertant cell therapy.

  12. Ex vivo gene therapy and vision.

    PubMed

    Gregory-Evans, Kevin; Bashar, A M A Emran; Tan, Malcolm

    2012-04-01

    Ex vivo gene therapy, a technique where genetic manipulation of cells is undertaken remotely and more safely since it is outside the body, is an emerging therapeutic strategy particularly well suited to targeting a specific organ rather than for treating a whole organism. The eye and visual pathways therefore make an attractive target for this approach. With blindness still so prevalent worldwide, new approaches to treatment would also be widely applicable and a significant advance in improving quality of life. Despite being a relatively new approach, ex vivo gene therapy has already achieved significant advances in the treatment of blindness in pre-clinical trials. In particular, advances are being achieved in corneal disease, glaucoma, retinal degeneration, stroke and multiple sclerosis through genetic re-programming of cells to replace degenerate cells and through more refined neuroprotection, modulation of inflammation and replacement of deficient protein. In this review we discuss the latest developments in ex vivo gene therapy relevant to the visual pathways and highlight the challenges that need to be overcome for progress into clinical trials.

  13. [Gene therapy for adenosine deaminase deficiency].

    PubMed

    Sakiyama, Yukio; Ariga, Tadashi; Ohtsu, Makoto

    2005-03-01

    A four year-old boy with adenosine deaminase (ADA-) deficient severe combined immunodeficiency(SCID) receiving PEG-ADA was treated under a gene therapy protocol targeting peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) in 1995. After eleven infusions of autologous PBLs transduced with retroviral vector LASN encoding ADAcDNA, he exhibited increased levels of the CD8+ T lymphocytes, serum immunoglobulin, specific antibodies and delayed type hypersensitivity skin tests. Follow-up studies also provided evidence of long-term persistence and function of transduced PBLs with improvement in the immune function. However, the therapeutic effect of this gene therapy has been difficult to assess because of the concomitant treatment of PEG-ADA. Two ADA-SCID patients have been currently treated with autologous bone marrow CD34+ cells engineered with a retroviral vector GCsapM-ADA after discontinuation of PEG-ADA. The restoration of intracellular ADA enzymatic activity in lymphocytes and granulocytes resulted in correction of the systemic toxicity and liver function in the absence of PEG-ADA treatment. Both patients are at home where they are clinically well, and they do not experience adversed effect, with follow up being 12 months after CD34+ cells gene therapy.

  14. [Gene therapy--current status and outlook].

    PubMed

    Hantzopoulos, P A; Gänsbacher, B

    1996-10-01

    None of the human gene transfer studies to date has shown definitive proof of clinical efficacy, despite more than 100 clinical protocols involving nearly 600 patients. In spite of the lack of positive results, tremendous hope permeates the field, biotechnology companies are getting started and raising millions of dollars from venture capital, and patients all over the world are agreeing to enroll in protocols involving this technology. Critics of the field claim that gene therapy has been overemphasized by researchers in academia, government and industry and by the scientific and popular media. Supporters of the field argue that the state of gene therapy is no different than other experimental therapies in its early stages. During the early stages of chemotherapy, agents were tested on hundreds of patients, often with a similar level of hope and no clinical effects. Despite the many controversies, one issue is shared by both groups: all of them recognize the tremendous potential of this technology to have an impact on human disease and share hope for long-term results.

  15. Regulatable Gene Expression Systems for Gene Therapy Applications: Progress and Future Challenges

    PubMed Central

    Goverdhana, S.; Puntel, M.; Xiong, W.; Zirger, J. M.; Barcia, C.; Curtin, J. F.; Soffer, E. B.; Mondkar, S.; King, G. D.; Hu, J.; Sciascia, S. A.; Candolfi, M.; Greengold, D. S.; Lowenstein, P. R.; Castro, M. G.

    2009-01-01

    Gene therapy aims to revert diseased phenotypes by the use of both viral and nonviral gene delivery systems. Substantial progress has been made in making gene transfer vehicles more efficient, less toxic, and nonimmunogenic and in allowing long-term transgene expression. One of the key issues in successfully implementing gene therapies in the clinical setting is to be able to regulate gene expression very tightly and consistently as and when it is needed. The regulation ought to be achievable using a compound that should be nontoxic, be able to penetrate into the desired target tissue or organ, and have a half-life of a few hours (as opposed to minutes or days) so that when withdrawn or added (depending on the regulatable system used) gene expression can be turned “on” or “off” quickly and effectively. Also, the genetic switches employed should ideally be nonimmunogenic in the host. The ability to switch transgenes on and off would be of paramount importance not only when the therapy is no longer needed, but also in the case of the development of adverse side effects to the therapy. Many regulatable systems are currently under development and some, i.e., the tetracycline-dependent transcriptional switch, have been used successfully for in vivo preclinical applications. Despite this, there are no examples of switches that have been employed in a human clinical trial. In this review, we aim to highlight the main regulatable systems currently under development, the gene transfer systems employed for their expression, and also the preclinical models in which they have been used successfully. We also discuss the substantial challenges that still remain before these regulatable switches can be employed in the clinical setting. PMID:15946903

  16. Targeting cell cycle regulation in cancer therapy.

    PubMed

    Diaz-Moralli, Santiago; Tarrado-Castellarnau, Míriam; Miranda, Anibal; Cascante, Marta

    2013-05-01

    Cell proliferation is an essential mechanism for growth, development and regeneration of eukaryotic organisms; however, it is also the cause of one of the most devastating diseases of our era: cancer. Given the relevance of the processes in which cell proliferation is involved, its regulation is of paramount importance for multicellular organisms. Cell division is orchestrated by a complex network of interactions between proteins, metabolism and microenvironment including several signaling pathways and mechanisms of control aiming to enable cell proliferation only in response to specific stimuli and under adequate conditions. Three main players have been identified in the coordinated variation of the many molecules that play a role in cell cycle: i) The cell cycle protein machinery including cyclin-dependent kinases (CDK)-cyclin complexes and related kinases, ii) The metabolic enzymes and related metabolites and iii) The reactive-oxygen species (ROS) and cellular redox status. The role of these key players and the interaction between oscillatory and non-oscillatory species have proved essential for driving the cell cycle. Moreover, cancer development has been associated to defects in all of them. Here, we provide an overview on the role of CDK-cyclin complexes, metabolic adaptations and oxidative stress in regulating progression through each cell cycle phase and transitions between them. Thus, new approaches for the design of innovative cancer therapies targeting crosstalk between cell cycle simultaneous events are proposed. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Tripartite meeting in gene and cell therapy, 2008: Irish Society for Gene and Cell Therapy, British Society for Gene Therapy, and International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy of Cancer.

    PubMed

    Guinn, Barbara; Casey, Garrett; Collins, Sara; O'Brien, Tim; Alexander, M Yvonne; Tangney, Mark

    2008-10-01

    The second annual meeting of the Irish Society for Gene and Cell Therapy was held in Cork, Ireland on May 15 and 16, 2008 (http://crr.ucc.ie/isgct/). The meeting was jointly organized with the British Society for Gene Therapy and the International Society for Cell and Gene Therapy of Cancer. Because of the location of the conference and the co-organization of this meeting with the British and International Gene Therapy societies, the meeting enjoyed a range of talks from some of the major leaders in the field. Particularly notable were the talented molecular and cell biologists from Ireland who have contributed cutting edge science to the field of gene therapy. Topics including cardiovascular disease, repair of single-gene disorders, and cancer gene therapy were discussed with presentations ranging from basic research to translation into the clinic. Here we describe some of the most exciting presentations and their potential impact on imminent clinical gene therapy trials.

  18. Developmental regulation of embryonic genes in plants

    SciTech Connect

    Borkird, C.; Choi, Jung, H.; Jin, Zhenghua; Franz, G.; Hatzopoulos, P.; Chorneaus, R.; Bonas, U.; Pelegri, F.; Sung, Z.R.

    1988-09-01

    Somatic embryogenesis from cultured carrot cells progresses through successive morphogenetic stages termed globular, heart, and torpedo. To understand the molecular mechanisms underlying plant embryogenesis, the authors isolated two genes differentially expressed during embryo development. The expression of these two genes is associated with heart-stage embryogenesis. By altering the culture conditions and examining their expressions in a developmental variant cell line, they found that these genes were controlled by the developmental program of embryogenesis and were not directly regulated by 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid, the growth regulator that promotes unorganized growth of cultured cells and suppresses embryo morphogenesis. These genes are also expressed in carrot zygotic embryos but not in seedlings or mature plants.

  19. Frontiers in Suicide Gene Therapy of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Malecki, Marek

    2012-01-01

    The National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the American Cancer Society (ACS) predict that 1,638,910 men and women will be diagnosed with cancer in the USA in 2012. Nearly 577,190 patients will die of cancer of all sites this year. Patients undergoing current systemic therapies will suffer multiple side effects from nausea to infertility. Potential parents, when diagnosed with cancer, will have to deposit oocytes or sperm prior to starting systemic radiation or chemo-therapy for the future genetic testing and in vitro fertilization, while trying to avoid risks of iatrogenic mutations in their germ cells. Otherwise, children of parents treated with systemic therapies, will be at high risk of developing genetic disorders. According to these predictions, this year will carry another, very poor therapeutic record again. The ultimate goal of cancer therapy is the complete elimination of all cancer cells, while leaving all healthy cells unharmed. One of the most promising therapeutic strategies in this regard is cancer suicide gene therapy (CSGT), which is rapidly progressing into new frontiers. The therapeutic success, in CSGT, is primarily contingent upon precision in delivery of the therapeutic transgenes to the cancer cells only. This is addressed by discovering and targeting unique or / and over-expressed biomarkers displayed on the cancer cells and cancer stem cells. Specificity of cancer therapeutic effects is further enhanced by designing the DNA constructs, which put the therapeutic genes under the control of the cancer cell specific promoters. The delivery of the suicidal genes to the cancer cells involves viral, as well as synthetic vectors, which are guided by cancer specific antibodies and ligands. The delivery options also include engineered stem cells with tropisms towards cancers. Main mechanisms inducing cancer cells’ deaths include: transgenic expression of thymidine kinases, cytosine deaminases, intracellular antibodies, telomeraseses, caspases, DNases

  20. [Gene therapy of SCID-X1].

    PubMed

    Baum, C; Schambach, A; Modlich, U; Thrasher, A

    2007-12-01

    X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID-X1) is an inherited disease caused by inactivating mutations in the gene encoding the interleukin 2 receptor common gamma chain (IL2RG), which is located on the X-chromosome. Affected boys fail to develop two major effector cell types of the immune system (T cells and NK cells) and suffer from a functional B cell defect. Although drugs such as antibiotics can offer partial protection, the boys normally die in the first year of life in the absence of a curative therapy. For a third of the children, bone marrow transplantation from a fully matched donor is available and can cure the disease without major side effects. Mismatched bone marrow transplantation, however, is complicated by severe and potentially lethal side effects. Over the past decade, scientists worldwide have developed new treatments by introducing a correct copy of the IL2RG-cDNA. Gene therapy was highly effective when applied in young children. However, in a few patients the IL2RG-gene vector has unfortunately caused leukaemia. Activation of cellular proto-oncogenes by accidental integration of the gene vector has been identified as the underlying mechanism. In future clinical trials, improved vector technology in combination with other protocol modifications may reduce the risk of this side effect.

  1. Multifactorial Regulation of a Hox Target Gene

    PubMed Central

    Stöbe, Petra; Stein, Sokrates M. A.; Habring-Müller, Anette; Bezdan, Daniela; Fuchs, Aurelia L.; Hueber, Stefanie D.; Wu, Haijia; Lohmann, Ingrid

    2009-01-01

    Hox proteins play fundamental roles in controlling morphogenetic diversity along the anterior–posterior body axis of animals by regulating distinct sets of target genes. Within their rather broad expression domains, individual Hox proteins control cell diversification and pattern formation and consequently target gene expression in a highly localized manner, sometimes even only in a single cell. To achieve this high-regulatory specificity, it has been postulated that Hox proteins co-operate with other transcription factors to activate or repress their target genes in a highly context-specific manner in vivo. However, only a few of these factors have been identified. Here, we analyze the regulation of the cell death gene reaper (rpr) by the Hox protein Deformed (Dfd) and suggest that local activation of rpr expression in the anterior part of the maxillary segment is achieved through a combinatorial interaction of Dfd with at least eight functionally diverse transcriptional regulators on a minimal enhancer. It follows that context-dependent combinations of Hox proteins and other transcription factors on small, modular Hox response elements (HREs) could be responsible for the proper spatio-temporal expression of Hox targets. Thus, a large number of transcription factors are likely to be directly involved in Hox target gene regulation in vivo. PMID:19282966

  2. Posttranscriptional Regulation of the Neurofibromatosis 2 Gene

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-07-01

    Wu, and D.B. Welling. 2003. Transcriptional Regulation of the Human Neurofibromatosis 2 (NF2) Gene. Pediatric Academic Societies’ Meeting, Seattle... Pediatric Academic Societies’ Meeting, Seattle, WA. (3) Welling, D.B., J.M. Lasak, E.M. Akhmametyeva, B.A. Neff, and L.-S. Chang. 2003. Analysis of...Expression of the Neurofibromatosis 2 Gene during Early Development. Pediatric Academic Societies’ Meeting, San Francisco, CA. (7) Welling, D.B., BA

  3. RNA-based gene circuits for cell regulation

    PubMed Central

    KARAGIANNIS, Peter; FUJITA, Yoshihiko; SAITO, Hirohide

    2016-01-01

    A major goal of synthetic biology is to control cell behavior. RNA-mediated genetic switches (RNA switches) are devices that serve this purpose, as they can control gene expressions in response to input signals. In general, RNA switches consist of two domains: an aptamer domain, which binds to an input molecule, and an actuator domain, which controls the gene expression. An input binding to the aptamer can cause the actuator to alter the RNA structure, thus changing access to translation machinery. The assembly of multiple RNA switches has led to complex gene circuits for cell therapies, including the selective killing of pathological cells and purification of cell populations. The inclusion of RNA binding proteins, such as L7Ae, increases the repertoire and precision of the circuit. In this short review, we discuss synthetic RNA switches for gene regulation and their potential therapeutic applications. PMID:27840389

  4. Curing genetic disease with gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Williams, David A

    2014-01-01

    Development of viral vectors that allow high efficiency gene transfer into mammalian cells in the early 1980s foresaw the treatment of severe monogenic diseases in humans. The application of gene transfer using viral vectors has been successful in diseases of the blood and immune systems, albeit with several curative studies also showing serious adverse events (SAEs). In children with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID-X1), chronic granulomatous disease, and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome, these SAEs were caused by inappropriate activation of oncogenes. Subsequent studies have defined the vector sequences responsible for these transforming events. Members of the Transatlantic Gene Therapy Consortium [TAGTC] have collaboratively developed new vectors that have proven safer in preclinical studies and used these vectors in new clinical trials in SCID-X1. These trials have shown evidence of early efficacy and preliminary integration analysis data from the SCID-X1 trial suggest an improved safety profile.

  5. Curing Genetic Disease with Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Williams, David A.

    2014-01-01

    Development of viral vectors that allow high efficiency gene transfer into mammalian cells in the early 1980s foresaw the treatment of severe monogenic diseases in humans. The application of gene transfer using viral vectors has been successful in diseases of the blood and immune systems, albeit with several curative studies also showing serious adverse events (SAEs). In children with X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID-X1), chronic granulomatous disease, and Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome, these SAEs were caused by inappropriate activation of oncogenes. Subsequent studies have defined the vector sequences responsible for these transforming events. Members of the Transatlantic Gene Therapy Consortium [TAGTC] have collaboratively developed new vectors that have proven safer in preclinical studies and used these vectors in new clinical trials in SCID-X1. These trials have shown evidence of early efficacy and preliminary integration analysis data from the SCID-X1 trial suggest an improved safety profile. PMID:25125725

  6. Epigenetic regulation of gene responsiveness in Arabidopsis

    PubMed Central

    To, Taiko K.; Kim, Jong Myong

    2014-01-01

    The regulation of chromatin structure is inevitable for proper transcriptional response in eukaryotes. Recent reports in Arabidopsis have suggested that gene responsiveness is modulated by particular chromatin status. One such feature is H2A.Z, a histone variant conserved among eukaryotes. In Arabidopsis, H2A.Z is enriched within gene bodies of transcriptionally variable genes, which is in contrast to genic DNA methylation found within constitutive genes. In the absence of H2A.Z, the genes normally harboring H2A.Z within gene bodies are transcriptionally misregulated, while DNA methylation is unaffected. Therefore, H2A.Z may promote variability of gene expression without affecting genic DNA methylation. Another epigenetic information that could be important for gene responsiveness is trimethylation of histone H3 lysine 4 (H3K4me3). The level of H3K4me3 increases when stress responsive genes are transcriptionally activated, and it decreases after recovery from the stress. Even after the recovery, however, H3K4me3 is kept at some atypical levels, suggesting possible role of H3K4me3 for a stress memory. In this review, we summarize and discuss the growing evidences connecting chromatin features and gene responsiveness. PMID:24432027

  7. Gene expression-targeted isoflavone therapy.

    PubMed

    Węgrzyn, Alicja

    2012-04-01

    Lysosomal storage diseases (LSD) form a group of inherited metabolic disorders caused by dysfunction of one of the lysosomal proteins, resulting in the accumulation of certain compounds. Although these disorders are among first genetic diseases for which specific treatments were proposed, there are still serious unsolved problems that require development of novel therapeutic procedures. An example is neuronopathy, which develops in most of LSD and cannot be treated efficiently by currently approved therapies. Recently, a new potential therapy, called gene expression-targeted isoflavone therapy (GET IT), has been proposed for a group of LSD named mucopolysaccharidoses (MPS), in which storage of incompletely degraded glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) results in severe symptoms of virtually all tissues and organs, including central nervous system. The idea of this therapy is to inhibit synthesis of GAGs by modulating expression of genes coding for enzymes involved in synthesis of these compounds. Such a modulation is possible by using isoflavones, particularly genistein, which interfere with a signal transduction process necessary for stimulation of expression of certain genes. Results of in vitro experiments and studies on animal models indicated a high efficiency of GET IT, including correction of behavior of affected mice. However, clinical trials, performed with soy isoflavone extracts, revealed only limited efficacy. This caused a controversy about GET IT as a potential, effective treatment of patients suffering from MPS, especially neuronopathic forms of these diseases. It this critical review, I present possible molecular mechanisms of therapeutic action of isoflavones (particularly genistein) and suggest that efficacy of GET IT might be sufficiently high when using relatively high doses of synthetic genistein (which was employed in experiments on cell cultures and mouse models) rather than low doses of soy isoflavone extracts (which were used in clinical trials). This

  8. The TRANSFAC system on gene expression regulation.

    PubMed

    Wingender, E; Chen, X; Fricke, E; Geffers, R; Hehl, R; Liebich, I; Krull, M; Matys, V; Michael, H; Ohnhäuser, R; Prüss, M; Schacherer, F; Thiele, S; Urbach, S

    2001-01-01

    The TRANSFAC database on transcription factors and their DNA-binding sites and profiles (http://www.gene-regulation.de/) has been quantitatively extended and supplemented by a number of modules. These modules give information about pathologically relevant mutations in regulatory regions and transcription factor genes (PathoDB), scaffold/matrix attached regions (S/MARt DB), signal transduction (TRANSPATH) and gene expression sources (CYTOMER). Altogether, these distinct database modules constitute the TRANSFAC system. They are accompanied by a number of program routines for identifying potential transcription factor binding sites or for localizing individual components in the regulatory network of a cell.

  9. Pre-emptive hypoxia-regulated HO-1 gene therapy improves post-ischaemic limb perfusion and tissue regeneration in mice.

    PubMed

    Jazwa, Agnieszka; Stepniewski, Jacek; Zamykal, Martin; Jagodzinska, Jolanta; Meloni, Marco; Emanueli, Costanza; Jozkowicz, Alicja; Dulak, Jozef

    2013-01-01

    Haem oxygenase-1 (HO-1) is a haem-degrading enzyme that generates carbon monoxide, bilirubin, and iron ions. Through these compounds, HO-1 mitigates cellular injury by exerting antioxidant, anti-apoptotic, and anti-inflammatory effects. Here, we examined the influence of HO-1 deficiency and transient hypoxia/ischaemia-induced HO-1 overexpression on post-injury hindlimb recovery. Mice lacking functional HO-1 (HO-1(-/-)) showed reduced reparative neovascularization in ischaemic skeletal muscles, impaired blood flow (BF) recovery, and increased muscle cell death compared with their wild-type littermates. Human microvascular endothelial cells (HMEC-1) transfected with plasmid vector (pHRE-HO-1) carrying human HO-1 driven by three hypoxia response elements (HREs) and cultured in 0.5% oxygen demonstrated markedly increased expression of HO-1. Such upregulated HO-1 levels were effective in conferring protection against H(2)O(2)-induced cell death and in promoting the proangiogenic phenotype of HMEC-1 cells. More importantly, when delivered in vivo, pHRE-HO-1 significantly improved the post-ischaemic foot BF in mice subjected to femoral artery ligation. These effects were associated with reduced levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and CXCL1) and lower numbers of transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labelling-positive cells. Moreover, HO-1 delivered into mouse skeletal muscles seems to influence the regenerative potential of myocytes as it significantly changed the expression of transcriptional (Pax7, MyoD, myogenin) and post-transcriptional (miR-146a, miR-206) regulators of skeletal muscle regeneration. Our results suggest the therapeutic potential of HO-1 for prevention of adverse effects in critical limb ischaemia.

  10. A Novel Gene Gun-Mediated IL-12 Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2000-10-01

    The results of this study show that particle-mediated IL-12 gene therapy was effective against mammary tumors in mouse models. IL-12 gene therapy of...combination with IL-12 gene therapy , IL-18 and ICE genes were found to be more effective in treatment of established TS/A mammary tumor than IL-12 alone. These...results suggest that particle-mediated IL-12 gene therapy , alone or in combination with other immunological approaches, may be effective for

  11. Antioxidant gene therapy against neuronal cell death

    PubMed Central

    Navarro-Yepes, Juliana; Zavala-Flores, Laura; Annadurai, Anandhan; Wang, Fang; Skotak, Maciej; Chandra, Namas; Li, Ming; Pappa, Aglaia; Martinez-Fong, Daniel; Razo, Luz Maria Del; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet; Franco, Rodrigo

    2014-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a common hallmark of neuronal cell death associated with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, as well as brain stroke/ischemia and traumatic brain injury. Increased accumulation of reactive species of both oxygen (ROS) and nitrogen (RNS) has been implicated in mitochondrial dysfunction, energy impairment, alterations in metal homeostasis and accumulation of aggregated proteins observed in neurodegenerative disorders, which lead to the activation/modulation of cell death mechanisms that include apoptotic, necrotic and autophagic pathways. Thus, the design of novel antioxidant strategies to selectively target oxidative stress and redox imbalance might represent important therapeutic approaches against neurological disorders. This work reviews the evidence demonstrating the ability of genetically encoded antioxidant systems to selectively counteract neuronal cell loss in neurodegenerative diseases and ischemic brain damage. Because gene therapy approaches to treat inherited and acquired disorders offer many unique advantages over conventional therapeutic approaches, we discussed basic research/clinical evidence and the potential of virus-mediated gene delivery techniques for antioxidant gene therapy. PMID:24333264

  12. Gene therapy for primary adaptive immune deficiencies.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Alain; Hacein-Bey-Abina, Salima; Cavazzana-Calvo, Marina

    2011-06-01

    Gene therapy has become an option for the treatment of 2 forms of severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID): X-linked SCID and adenosine deaminase deficiency. The results of clinical trials initiated more than 10 years ago testify to sustained and reproducible correction of the underlying T-cell immunodeficiency. Successful treatment is based on the selective advantage conferred on T-cell precursors through their expression of the therapeutic transgene. However, "first-generation" retroviral vectors also caused leukemia in some patients with X-linked SCID because of the constructs' tendency to insert into active genes (eg, proto-oncogenes) in progenitor cells and transactivate an oncogene through a viral element in the long terminal repeat. These elements have been deleted from the vectors now in use. Together with the use of lentiviral vectors (which are more potent for transducing stem cells), these advances should provide a basis for the safe and effective extension of gene therapy's indications in the field of primary immunodeficiencies. Nevertheless, this extension will have to be proved by examining the results of the ongoing clinical trials.

  13. Lifespan-regulating genes in C. elegans

    PubMed Central

    Uno, Masaharu; Nishida, Eisuke

    2016-01-01

    The molecular mechanisms underlying the aging process have garnered much attention in recent decades because aging is the most significant risk factor for many chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cancer. Until recently, the aging process was not considered to be an actively regulated process; therefore, discovering that the insulin/insulin-like growth factor-1 signaling pathway is a lifespan-regulating genetic pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans was a major breakthrough that changed our understanding of the aging process. Currently, it is thought that animal lifespans are influenced by genetic and environmental factors. The genes involved in lifespan regulation are often associated with major signaling pathways that link the rate of aging to environmental factors. Although many of the major mechanisms governing the aging process have been identified from studies in short-lived model organisms such as yeasts, worms and flies, the same mechanisms are frequently observed in mammals, indicating that the genes and signaling pathways that regulate lifespan are highly conserved among different species. This review summarizes the lifespan-regulating genes, with a specific focus on studies in C. elegans. PMID:28721266

  14. Targeting Gene-Viro-Therapy with AFP driving Apoptin gene shows potent antitumor effect in hepatocarcinoma

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Gene therapy and viral therapy are used for cancer therapy for many years, but the results are less than satisfactory. Our aim was to construct a new recombinant adenovirus which is more efficient to kill hepatocarcinoma cells but more safe to normal cells. Methods By using the Cancer Targeting Gene-Viro-Therapy strategy, Apoptin, a promising cancer therapeutic gene was inserted into the double-regulated oncolytic adenovirus AD55 in which E1A gene was driven by alpha fetoprotein promoter along with a 55 kDa deletion in E1B gene to form AD55-Apoptin. The anti-tumor effects and safety were examined by western blotting, virus yield assay, real time polymerase chain reaction, 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2, 5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide assay, Hoechst33342 staining, Fluorescence-activated cell sorting, xenograft tumor model, Immunohistochemical assay, liver function analysis and Terminal deoxynucleotidyl transferase mediated dUTP Nick End Labeling assay. Results The recombinant virus AD55-Apoptin has more significant antitumor effect for hepatocelluar carcinoma cell lines (in vitro) than that of AD55 and even ONYX-015 but no or little impair on normal cell lines. Furthermore, it also shows an obvious in vivo antitumor effect on the Huh-7 liver carcinoma xenograft in nude mice with bigger beginning tumor volume till about 425 mm3 but has no any damage on the function of liver. The induction of apoptosis is involved in AD55-Apoptin induced antitumor effects. Conclusion The AD55-Apoptin can be a potential anti-hepatoma agent with remarkable antitumor efficacy as well as higher safety in cancer targeting gene-viro-therapy system. PMID:22321574

  15. The Muscular Dystrophies: From Genes to Therapies

    PubMed Central

    Porter, Neil C; Bloch, Robert J

    2015-01-01

    The genetic basis of many muscular disorders, including many of the more common muscular dystrophies, is now known. Clinically, the recent genetic advances have improved diagnostic capabilities, but they have not yet provided clues about treatment or management. Thanks to better management strategies and therapeutic interventions, however, many patients with a muscular dystrophy are more active and are living longer. Physical therapists, therefore, are more likely to see a patient with a muscular dystrophy, so understanding these muscle disorders and their management is essential. Physical therapy offers the most promise in caring for the majority of patients with these conditions, because it is unlikely that advances in gene therapy will significantly alter their clinical treatment in the near future. This perspective covers some of the basic molecular biological advances together with the clinical manifestations of the muscular dystrophies and the latest approaches to their management. PMID:16305275

  16. State-of-the-art human gene therapy: part I. Gene delivery technologies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dan; Gao, Guangping

    2014-01-01

    Safe and effective gene delivery is a prerequisite for successful gene therapy. In the early age of human gene therapy, setbacks due to problematic gene delivery vehicles plagued the exciting therapeutic outcome. However, gene delivery technologies rapidly evolved ever since. With the advancement of gene delivery techniques, gene therapy clinical trials surged during the past decade. As the first gene therapy product (Glybera) has obtained regulatory approval and reached clinic, human gene therapy finally realized the promise that genes can be medicines. The diverse gene delivery techniques available today have laid the foundation for gene therapy applications in treating a wide range of human diseases. Some of the most urgent unmet medical needs, such as cancer and pandemic infectious diseases, have been tackled by gene therapy strategies with promising results. Furthermore, combining gene transfer with other breakthroughs in biomedical research and novel biotechnologies opened new avenues for gene therapy. Such innovative therapeutic strategies are unthinkable until now, and are expected to be revolutionary. In part I of this review, we introduced recent development of non-viral and viral gene delivery technology platforms. As cell-based gene therapy blossomed, we also summarized the diverse types of cells and vectors employed in ex vivo gene transfer. Finally, challenges in current gene delivery technologies for human use were discussed.

  17. Gene therapy: progress in childhood disease.

    PubMed

    Ginn, Samantha L; Alexander, Ian E

    2012-06-01

    The recent sequencing of the human genome combined with the development of massively high throughput genetic analysis technologies is driving unprecedented growth in our knowledge of the molecular basis of disease. While this has already had a major impact on our diagnostic power, the therapeutic benefits remain largely unrealised. This review examines progress in the exciting and challenging field of gene therapy. In particular we focus on the treatment of genetic disease in infants and children where the most significant successes have been observed to date, despite the majority of trial participants being adults. Notably, gene transfer to the haematopoietic compartment has provided the clearest examples of therapeutic benefit, particularly in the context of primary immunodeficiencies. The triumphs and tribulations of these successes are explored, and the key challenges confronting researchers as they seek to further advance the field are defined and discussed.

  18. Gene therapy: Into the home stretch

    SciTech Connect

    Culliton, B.J.

    1990-08-31

    Tumors cannot live without blood. Shut off the blood vessels that feed a tumor and the tumor will turn black and shrivel away. That simple idea lies behind the first attempt to cure a disease by gene therapy, expected to take place at the National Cancer Institute in the next few weeks. When it does, it will test a technique that worked like a charm in mice. When a potent natural killer called tumor necrosis factor, or TNF, is injected into the bloodstream of mice, it begins to shrink tumors within hours, sometimes even minutes. But so far, attempts to recreate that miracle in people with cancer have not fared as well. TNF has been given intravenously to more than 35 patients in experiments that were a failure. Researchers hope to deliver TNF in much larger doses directly to a tumor by packaging the gene for TNF inside special lymphocytes that have a natural affinity for cancer.

  19. Gene therapy of primary T cell immunodeficiencies.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Alain; Hacein-Bey-Abina, Salima; Cavazzana-Calvo, Marina

    2013-08-10

    Gene therapy of severe combined immunodeficiencies has been proven to be effective to provide sustained correction of the T cell immunodeficiencies. This has been achieved for 2 forms of SCID, i.e SCID-X1 (γc deficiency) and adenosine deaminase deficiency. Occurrence of gene toxicity generated by integration of first generation retroviral vectors, as observed in the SCID-X1 trials has led to replace these vectors by self inactivated (SIN) retro(or lenti) viruses that may provide equivalent efficacy with a better safety profile. Results of ongoing clinical studies in SCID as well as in other primary immunodeficiencies, such as the Wiskott Aldrich syndrome, will be thus very informative.

  20. GENE REGULATION BY MAPK SUBSTRATE COMPETITION

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Yoosik; Andreu, María José; Lim, Bomyi; Chung, Kwanghun; Terayama, Mark; Jiménez, Gerardo; Berg, Celeste A.; Lu, Hang; Shvartsman, Stanislav Y.

    2011-01-01

    SUMMARY Developing tissues are patterned by coordinated activities of signaling systems, which can be integrated by a regulatory region of a gene that binds multiple transcription factors or by a transcription factor that is modified by multiple enzymes. Based on a combination of genetic and imaging experiments in the early Drosophila embryo, we describe a signal integration mechanism that cannot be reduced to a single gene regulatory element or a single transcription factor. This mechanism relies on an enzymatic network formed by Mitogen Activated Protein Kinase (MAPK) and its substrates. Specifically, anteriorly localized MAPK substrates, such as Bicoid, antagonize MAPK-dependent downregulation of Capicua, a repressor which is involved in gene regulation along the dorsoventral axis of the embryo. MAPK substrate competition provides a basis for ternary interaction of the anterior, dorsoventral, and terminal patterning systems. A mathematical model of this interaction can explain gene expression patterns with both anteroposterior and dorsoventral polarities. PMID:21664584

  1. Chemically regulated gene expression in plants.

    PubMed

    Padidam, Malla

    2003-04-01

    Chemically inducible systems that activate or inactivate gene expression have many potential applications in the determination of gene function and in plant biotechnology. The precise timing and control of gene expression are important aspects of chemically inducible systems. Several systems have been developed and used to analyze gene function, marker-free plant transformation, site-specific DNA excision, activation tagging, conditional genetic complementation, and restoration of male fertility. Chemicals that are used to regulate transgene expression include the antibiotic tetracycline, the steroids dexamethasone and estradiol, copper, ethanol, the inducer of pathogen-related proteins benzothiadiazol, herbicide safeners, and the insecticide methoxyfenozide. Systems that are suitable for field application are particularly useful for experimental systems and have potential applications in biotechnology.

  2. Regulation of Gene Expression in Protozoa Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Consuelo; Esther Ramirez, M.; Calixto-Galvez, Mercedes; Medel, Olivia; Rodríguez, Mario A.

    2010-01-01

    Infections with protozoa parasites are associated with high burdens of morbidity and mortality across the developing world. Despite extensive efforts to control the transmission of these parasites, the spread of populations resistant to drugs and the lack of effective vaccines against them contribute to their persistence as major public health problems. Parasites should perform a strict control on the expression of genes involved in their pathogenicity, differentiation, immune evasion, or drug resistance, and the comprehension of the mechanisms implicated in that control could help to develop novel therapeutic strategies. However, until now these mechanisms are poorly understood in protozoa. Recent investigations into gene expression in protozoa parasites suggest that they possess many of the canonical machineries employed by higher eukaryotes for the control of gene expression at transcriptional, posttranscriptional, and epigenetic levels, but they also contain exclusive mechanisms. Here, we review the current understanding about the regulation of gene expression in Plasmodium sp., Trypanosomatids, Entamoeba histolytica and Trichomonas vaginalis. PMID:20204171

  3. Cell Targeting in Anti-Cancer Gene Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lila, Mohd Azmi Mohd; Siew, John Shia Kwong; Zakaria, Hayati; Saad, Suria Mohd; Ni, Lim Shen; Abdullah, Jafri Malin

    2004-01-01

    Gene therapy is a promising approach towards cancer treatment. The main aim of the therapy is to destroy cancer cells, usually by apoptotic mechanisms, and preserving others. However, its application has been hindered by many factors including poor cellular uptake, non-specific cell targeting and undesirable interferences with other genes or gene products. A variety of strategies exist to improve cellular uptake efficiency of gene-based therapies. This paper highlights advancements in gene therapy research and its application in relation to anti-cancer treatment. PMID:22977356

  4. Transposable element origins of epigenetic gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Lisch, Damon; Bennetzen, Jeffrey L

    2011-04-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are massively abundant and unstable in all plant genomes, but are mostly silent because of epigenetic suppression. Because all known epigenetic pathways act on all TEs, it is likely that the specialized epigenetic regulation of regular host genes (RHGs) was co-opted from this ubiquitous need for the silencing of TEs and viruses. With their internally repetitive and rearranging structures, and the acquisition of fragments of RHGs, the expression of TEs commonly makes antisense RNAs for both TE genes and RHGs. These antisense RNAs, particularly from heterochromatic reservoirs of 'zombie' TEs that are rearranged to form variously internally repetitive structures, may be advantageous because their induction will help rapidly suppress active TEs of the same family. RHG fragments within rapidly rearranging TEs may also provide the raw material for the ongoing generation of miRNA genes. TE gene expression is regulated by both environmental and developmental signals, and insertions can place nearby RHGs under the regulation (both standard and epigenetic) of the TE. The ubiquity of TEs, their frequent preferential association with RHGs, and their ability to be programmed by epigenetic signals all indicate that RGHs have nearly unlimited access to novel regulatory cassettes to assist plant adaptation.

  5. Gene expression regulation in roots under drought.

    PubMed

    Janiak, Agnieszka; Kwaśniewski, Mirosław; Szarejko, Iwona

    2016-02-01

    Stress signalling and regulatory networks controlling expression of target genes are the basis of plant response to drought. Roots are the first organs exposed to water deficiency in the soil and are the place of drought sensing. Signalling cascades transfer chemical signals toward the shoot and initiate molecular responses that lead to the biochemical and morphological changes that allow plants to be protected against water loss and to tolerate stress conditions. Here, we present an overview of signalling network and gene expression regulation pathways that are actively induced in roots under drought stress. In particular, the role of several transcription factor (TF) families, including DREB, AP2/ERF, NAC, bZIP, MYC, CAMTA, Alfin-like and Q-type ZFP, in the regulation of root response to drought are highlighted. The information provided includes available data on mutual interactions between these TFs together with their regulation by plant hormones and other signalling molecules. The most significant downstream target genes and molecular processes that are controlled by the regulatory factors are given. These data are also coupled with information about the influence of the described regulatory networks on root traits and root development which may translate to enhanced drought tolerance. This is the first literature survey demonstrating the gene expression regulatory machinery that is induced by drought stress, presented from the perspective of roots.

  6. Regulation of Airway Mucin Gene Expression

    PubMed Central

    Thai, Philip; Loukoianov, Artem; Wachi, Shinichiro; Wu, Reen

    2015-01-01

    Mucins are important components that exert a variety of functions in cell-cell interaction, epidermal growth factor receptor signaling, and airways protection. In the conducting airways of the lungs, mucins are the major contributor to the viscoelastic property of mucous secretion, which is the major barrier to trapping inhaled microbial organism, particulates, and oxidative pollutants. The homeostasis of mucin production is an important feature in conducting airways for the maintenance of mucociliary function. Aberrant mucin secretion and accumulation in airway lumen are clinical hallmarks associated with various lung diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cystic fibrosis, emphysema, and lung cancer. Among 20 known mucin genes identified, 11 of them have been verified at either the mRNA and/or protein level in airways. The regulation of mucin genes is complicated, as are the mediators and signaling pathways. This review summarizes the current view on the mediators, the signaling pathways, and the transcriptional units that are involved in the regulation of airway mucin gene expression. In addition, we also point out essential features of epigenetic mechanisms for the regulation of these genes. PMID:17961085

  7. IBD Candidate Genes and Intestinal Barrier Regulation

    PubMed Central

    McCole, Declan F.

    2015-01-01

    Technological advances in the large scale analysis of human genetics have generated profound insights into possible genetic contributions to chronic diseases including the inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. To date, 163 distinct genetic risk loci have been associated with either Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, with a substantial degree of genetic overlap between these 2 conditions. Although many risk variants show a reproducible correlation with disease, individual gene associations only affect a subset of patients, and the functional contribution(s) of these risk variants to the onset of IBD is largely undetermined. Although studies in twins have demonstrated that the development of IBD is not mediated solely by genetic risk, it is nevertheless important to elucidate the functional consequences of risk variants for gene function in relevant cell types known to regulate key physiological processes that are compromised in IBD. This article will discuss IBD candidate genes that are known to be, or are suspected of being, involved in regulating the intestinal epithelial barrier and several of the physiological processes presided over by this dynamic and versatile layer of cells. This will include assembly and regulation of tight junctions, cell adhesion and polarity, mucus and glycoprotein regulation, bacterial sensing, membrane transport, epithelial differentiation, and restitution. PMID:25215613

  8. Targeting adipose tissue via systemic gene therapy.

    PubMed

    O'Neill, S M; Hinkle, C; Chen, S-J; Sandhu, A; Hovhannisyan, R; Stephan, S; Lagor, W R; Ahima, R S; Johnston, J C; Reilly, M P

    2014-07-01

    Adipose tissue has a critical role in energy and metabolic homeostasis, but it is challenging to adapt techniques to modulate adipose function in vivo. Here we develop an in vivo, systemic method of gene transfer specifically targeting adipose tissue using adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors. We constructed AAV vectors containing cytomegalovirus promoter-regulated reporter genes, intravenously injected adult mice with vectors using multiple AAV serotypes, and determined that AAV2/8 best targeted adipose tissue. Altering vectors to contain adiponectin promoter/enhancer elements and liver-specific microRNA-122 target sites restricted reporter gene expression to adipose tissue. As proof of efficacy, the leptin gene was incorporated into the adipose-targeted expression vector, package into AAV2/8 and administered intravenously to 9- to 10-week-old ob/ob mice. Phenotypic changes were measured over an 8-week period. Leptin mRNA and protein were expressed in adipose and leptin protein was secreted into plasma. Mice responded with reversal of weight gain, decreased hyperinsulinemia and improved glucose tolerance. AAV2/8-mediated systemic delivery of an adipose-targeted expression vector can replace a gene lacking in adipose tissue and correct a mouse model of human disease, demonstrating experimental application and therapeutic potential in disorders of adipose.

  9. Linker histones in hormonal gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Vicent, G P; Wright, R H G; Beato, M

    2016-03-01

    In the present review, we summarize advances in our knowledge on the role of the histone H1 family of proteins in breast cancer cells, focusing on their response to progestins. Histone H1 plays a dual role in gene regulation by hormones, both as a structural component of chromatin and as a dynamic modulator of transcription. It contributes to hormonal regulation of the MMTV promoter by stabilizing a homogeneous nucleosome positioning, which reduces basal transcription whereas at the same time promoting progesterone receptor binding and nucleosome remodeling. These combined effects enhance hormone dependent gene transcription, which eventually requires H1 phosphorylation and displacement. Various isoforms of histone H1 have specific functions in differentiated breast cancer cells and compact nucleosomal arrays to different extents in vitro. Genome-wide studies show that histone H1 has a key role in chromatin dynamics of hormone regulated genes. A complex sequence of enzymatic events, including phosphorylation by CDK2, PARylation by PARP1 and the ATP-dependent activity of NURF, are required for H1 displacement and gene de-repression, as a prerequisite for further nucleosome remodeling. Similarly, during hormone-dependent gene repression a dedicated enzymatic mechanism controls H1 deposition at promoters by a complex containing HP1γ, LSD1 and BRG1, the ATPase of the BAF complex. Thus, a broader vision of the histone code should include histone H1, as the linker histone variants actively participate in the regulation of the chromatin structure. How modifications of the core histones tails affect H1 modifications and vice versa is one of the many questions that remains to be addressed to provide a more comprehensive view of the histone cross-talk mechanisms.

  10. Genetic treatment of a molecular disorder: gene therapy approaches to sickle cell disease

    PubMed Central

    Hoban, Megan D.; Bauer, Daniel E.

    2016-01-01

    Effective medical management for sickle cell disease (SCD) remains elusive. As a prevalent and severe monogenic disorder, SCD has been long considered a logical candidate for gene therapy. Significant progress has been made in moving toward this goal. These efforts have provided substantial insight into the natural regulation of the globin genes and illuminated challenges for genetic manipulation of the hematopoietic system. The initial γ-retroviral vectors, next-generation lentiviral vectors, and novel genome engineering and gene regulation approaches each share the goal of preventing erythrocyte sickling. After years of preclinical studies, several clinical trials for SCD gene therapies are now open. This review focuses on progress made toward achieving gene therapy, the current state of the field, consideration of factors that may determine clinical success, and prospects for future development. PMID:26758916

  11. Genetic treatment of a molecular disorder: gene therapy approaches to sickle cell disease.

    PubMed

    Hoban, Megan D; Orkin, Stuart H; Bauer, Daniel E

    2016-02-18

    Effective medical management for sickle cell disease (SCD) remains elusive. As a prevalent and severe monogenic disorder, SCD has been long considered a logical candidate for gene therapy. Significant progress has been made in moving toward this goal. These efforts have provided substantial insight into the natural regulation of the globin genes and illuminated challenges for genetic manipulation of the hematopoietic system. The initial γ-retroviral vectors, next-generation lentiviral vectors, and novel genome engineering and gene regulation approaches each share the goal of preventing erythrocyte sickling. After years of preclinical studies, several clinical trials for SCD gene therapies are now open. This review focuses on progress made toward achieving gene therapy, the current state of the field, consideration of factors that may determine clinical success, and prospects for future development. © 2016 by The American Society of Hematology.

  12. Corneal gene therapy: basic science and translational perspective.

    PubMed

    Mohan, Rajiv R; Rodier, Jason T; Sharma, Ajay

    2013-07-01

    Corneal blindness is the third leading cause of blindness worldwide. Gene therapy is an emerging technology for corneal blindness due to the accessibility and immune-privileged nature of the cornea, ease of vector administration and visual monitoring, and ability to perform frequent noninvasive corneal assessment. Vision restoration by gene therapy is contingent upon vector and mode of therapeutic gene introduction into targeted cells/tissues. Numerous efficacious vectors, delivery techniques, and approaches have evolved in the last decade for developing gene-based interventions for corneal diseases. Maximizing the potential benefits of gene therapy requires efficient and sustained therapeutic gene expression in target cells, low toxicity, and a high safety profile. This review describes the basic science associated with many gene therapy vectors and the present progress of gene therapy carried out for various ocular surface disorders and diseases.

  13. Corneal Gene Therapy: Basic Science and Translational Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Mohan, Rajiv R.; Rodier, Jason T.; Sharma, Ajay

    2013-01-01

    Corneal blindness is the third leading cause of blindness worldwide. Gene therapy is an emerging technology for corneal blindness due to the accessibility and immune-privileged nature of the cornea, ease of vector administration and visual monitoring, and ability to perform frequent noninvasive corneal assessment. Vision restoration by gene therapy is contingent upon vector and mode of therapeutic gene introduction into targeted cells/tissues. Numerous efficacious vectors, delivery techniques, and approaches have evolved in last decade for developing gene-based interventions for corneal diseases. Maximizing the potential benefits of gene therapy requires efficient and sustained therapeutic gene expression in target cells, low toxicity, and a high safety profile. This review describes the basic science associated with many gene therapy vectors and the present progress of gene therapy carried out for various ocular surface disorders and diseases. PMID:23838017

  14. Gene regulation and speciation in house mice

    PubMed Central

    Mack, Katya L.; Campbell, Polly; Nachman, Michael W.

    2016-01-01

    One approach to understanding the process of speciation is to characterize the genetic architecture of post-zygotic isolation. As gene regulation requires interactions between loci, negative epistatic interactions between divergent regulatory elements might underlie hybrid incompatibilities and contribute to reproductive isolation. Here, we take advantage of a cross between house mouse subspecies, where hybrid dysfunction is largely unidirectional, to test several key predictions about regulatory divergence and reproductive isolation. Regulatory divergence between Mus musculus musculus and M. m. domesticus was characterized by studying allele-specific expression in fertile hybrid males using mRNA-sequencing of whole testes. We found extensive regulatory divergence between M. m. musculus and M. m. domesticus, largely attributable to cis-regulatory changes. When both cis and trans changes occurred, they were observed in opposition much more often than expected under a neutral model, providing strong evidence of widespread compensatory evolution. We also found evidence for lineage-specific positive selection on a subset of genes related to transcriptional regulation. Comparisons of fertile and sterile hybrid males identified a set of genes that were uniquely misexpressed in sterile individuals. Lastly, we discovered a nonrandom association between these genes and genes showing evidence of compensatory evolution, consistent with the idea that regulatory interactions might contribute to Dobzhansky-Muller incompatibilities and be important in speciation. PMID:26833790

  15. A Double Selection Approach to Achieve Specific Expression of Toxin Genes for Ovarian Cancer Gene Therapy

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-11-01

    established vector systems, new viruses are also being developed for targeted gene therapy . One promising example is the measles virus , an enveloped...promising approach. However, the gene delivery efficiency of human serotype 5 recombinant adeno- viruses (Ad5) in cancer gene therapy clinical trials to...replicative viruses , is a highly attractive approach, and an alternate approach to standard cancer therapies , including gene therapies . Virotherapy exploits

  16. Metabolic regulation and gene expression during aestivation.

    PubMed

    Storey, Kenneth B; Storey, Janet M

    2010-01-01

    The biochemical regulation of aestivation, a state of aerobic hypometabolism, achieves actions including strong overall suppression of metabolic rate, reprioritization of energy use by diverse cell functions, and enhancement of defenses such as protein chaperones and antioxidants that aid long-term life extension. This is accomplished by mechanisms that include differential action of intracellular signaling cascades, reversible protein phosphorylation to alter the activity states of multiple enzymes and functional proteins, global suppression of transcription and translation, and selective gene upregulation. Recent advances in understanding the regulation of aestivation are discussed with a particular emphasis on land snail and anuran models.

  17. Gene Expression in Leishmania Is Regulated Predominantly by Gene Dosage.

    PubMed

    Iantorno, Stefano A; Durrant, Caroline; Khan, Asis; Sanders, Mandy J; Beverley, Stephen M; Warren, Wesley C; Berriman, Matthew; Sacks, David L; Cotton, James A; Grigg, Michael E

    2017-09-12

    Leishmania tropica, a unicellular eukaryotic parasite present in North and East Africa, the Middle East, and the Indian subcontinent, has been linked to large outbreaks of cutaneous leishmaniasis in displaced populations in Iraq, Jordan, and Syria. Here, we report the genome sequence of this pathogen and 7,863 identified protein-coding genes, and we show that the majority of clinical isolates possess high levels of allelic diversity, genetic admixture, heterozygosity, and extensive aneuploidy. By utilizing paired genome-wide high-throughput DNA sequencing (DNA-seq) with RNA-seq, we found that gene dosage, at the level of individual genes or chromosomal "somy" (a general term covering disomy, trisomy, tetrasomy, etc.), accounted for greater than 85% of total gene expression variation in genes with a 2-fold or greater change in expression. High gene copy number variation (CNV) among membrane-bound transporters, a class of proteins previously implicated in drug resistance, was found for the most highly differentially expressed genes. Our results suggest that gene dosage is an adaptive trait that confers phenotypic plasticity among natural Leishmania populations by rapid down- or upregulation of transporter proteins to limit the effects of environmental stresses, such as drug selection.IMPORTANCELeishmania is a genus of unicellular eukaryotic parasites that is responsible for a spectrum of human diseases that range from cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) and mucocutaneous leishmaniasis (MCL) to life-threatening visceral leishmaniasis (VL). Developmental and strain-specific gene expression is largely thought to be due to mRNA message stability or posttranscriptional regulatory networks for this species, whose genome is organized into polycistronic gene clusters in the absence of promoter-mediated regulation of transcription initiation of nuclear genes. Genetic hybridization has been demonstrated to yield dramatic structural genomic variation, but whether such changes in gene

  18. Retinal Gene Therapy: Current Progress and Future Prospects

    PubMed Central

    Ku, Cristy A.; Pennesi, Mark E.

    2015-01-01

    Clinical trials treating inherited retinal dystrophy caused by RPE65 mutations had put retinal gene therapy at the forefront of gene therapy. Both successes and limitations in these clinical trials have fueled developments in gene vectors, which continue to further advance the field. These novel gene vectors aim to more safely and efficiently transduce retinal cells, expand the gene packaging capacity of AAV, and utilize new strategies to correct the varying mechanisms of dysfunction found with inherited retinal dystrophies. With recent clinical trials and numerous pre-clinical studies utilizing these novel vectors, the future of ocular gene therapy continues to hold vast potential. PMID:26609316

  19. Hyperbaric oxygen in chronic traumatic brain injury: oxygen, pressure, and gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Harch, Paul G

    2015-01-01

    Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a treatment for wounds in any location and of any duration that has been misunderstood for 353 years. Since 2008 it has been applied to the persistent post-concussion syndrome of mild traumatic brain injury by civilian and later military researchers with apparent conflicting results. The civilian studies are positive and the military-funded studies are a mixture of misinterpreted positive data, indeterminate data, and negative data. This has confused the medical, academic, and lay communities. The source of the confusion is a fundamental misunderstanding of the definition, principles, and mechanisms of action of hyperbaric oxygen therapy. This article argues that the traditional definition of hyperbaric oxygen therapy is arbitrary. The article establishes a scientific definition of hyperbaric oxygen therapy as a wound-healing therapy of combined increased atmospheric pressure and pressure of oxygen over ambient atmospheric pressure and pressure of oxygen whose main mechanisms of action are gene-mediated. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy exerts its wound-healing effects by expression and suppression of thousands of genes. The dominant gene actions are upregulation of trophic and anti-inflammatory genes and down-regulation of pro-inflammatory and apoptotic genes. The combination of genes affected depends on the different combinations of total pressure and pressure of oxygen. Understanding that hyperbaric oxygen therapy is a pressure and oxygen dose-dependent gene therapy allows for reconciliation of the conflicting TBI study results as outcomes of different doses of pressure and oxygen.

  20. Gene therapy in animal models of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa.

    PubMed

    Rossmiller, Brian; Mao, Haoyu; Lewin, Alfred S

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy for dominantly inherited genetic disease is more difficult than gene-based therapy for recessive disorders, which can be treated with gene supplementation. Treatment of dominant disease may require gene supplementation partnered with suppression of the expression of the mutant gene either at the DNA level, by gene repair, or at the RNA level by RNA interference or transcriptional repression. In this review, we examine some of the gene delivery approaches used to treat animal models of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa, focusing on those models associated with mutations in the gene for rhodopsin. We conclude that combinatorial approaches have the greatest promise for success.

  1. Gene therapy in animal models of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa

    PubMed Central

    Rossmiller, Brian; Mao, Haoyu

    2012-01-01

    Gene therapy for dominantly inherited genetic disease is more difficult than gene-based therapy for recessive disorders, which can be treated with gene supplementation. Treatment of dominant disease may require gene supplementation partnered with suppression of the expression of the mutant gene either at the DNA level, by gene repair, or at the RNA level by RNA interference or transcriptional repression. In this review, we examine some of the gene delivery approaches used to treat animal models of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa, focusing on those models associated with mutations in the gene for rhodopsin. We conclude that combinatorial approaches have the greatest promise for success. PMID:23077406

  2. Gene replacement therapy for genetic hepatocellular jaundice.

    PubMed

    van Dijk, Remco; Beuers, Ulrich; Bosma, Piter J

    2015-06-01

    Jaundice results from the systemic accumulation of bilirubin, the final product of the catabolism of haem. Inherited liver disorders of bilirubin metabolism and transport can result in reduced hepatic uptake, conjugation or biliary secretion of bilirubin. In patients with Rotor syndrome, bilirubin (re)uptake is impaired due to the deficiency of two basolateral/sinusoidal hepatocellular membrane proteins, organic anion-transporting polypeptide 1B1 (OATP1B1) and OATP1B3. Dubin-Johnson syndrome is caused by a defect in the ATP-dependent canalicular transporter, multidrug resistance-associated protein 2 (MRP2), which mediates the export of conjugated bilirubin into bile. Both disorders are benign and not progressive and are characterised by elevated serum levels of mainly conjugated bilirubin. Uridine diphospho-glucuronosyl transferase 1A1 (UGT1A1) is responsible for the glucuronidation of bilirubin; deficiency of this enzyme results in unconjugated hyperbilirubinaemia. Gilbert syndrome is the mild and benign form of inherited unconjugated hyperbilirubinaemia and is mostly caused by reduced promoter activity of the UGT1A1 gene. Crigler-Najjar syndrome is the severe inherited form of unconjugated hyperbilirubinaemia due to mutations in the UGT1A1 gene, which can cause kernicterus early in life and can be even lethal when left untreated. Due to major disadvantages of the current standard treatments for Crigler-Najjar syndrome, phototherapy and liver transplantation, new effective therapeutic strategies are under development. Here, we review the clinical features, pathophysiology and genetic background of these inherited disorders of bilirubin metabolism and transport. We also discuss the upcoming treatment option of viral gene therapy for genetic disorders such as Crigler-Najjar syndrome and the possible immunological consequences of this therapy.

  3. Gene therapy for osteosarcoma: steps towards clinical studies.

    PubMed

    Dass, Crispin R; Choong, Peter F M

    2008-04-01

    Gene therapy, an applied form of biotechnology, relies on the delivery of foreign DNA into cells. More than 50% of all reported clinical trials for gene therapy are for cancer, though only a scant number for osteosarcoma. Osteosarcoma is a neoplasm afflicting young adults, who in their prime years of life suffer debilitation if not death. The disease is not entirely curable, even with surgery combined with aggressive chemotherapy. Thus, other forms of therapies are being evaluated, including gene therapy. There exist two major forms of gene transfer: viral and non-viral. This review only covers proof-of-principle work carried out in cancer beyond the cell culture stage, in animals. Drawing from the experiences of gene therapy against other cancers, studies for which have already reached the clinical phase, the review discusses potential pitfalls and solutions to enhance gene therapy for osteosarcoma.

  4. Regulation of methane genes and genome expression

    SciTech Connect

    John N. Reeve

    2009-09-09

    At the start of this project, it was known that methanogens were Archaeabacteria (now Archaea) and were therefore predicted to have gene expression and regulatory systems different from Bacteria, but few of the molecular biology details were established. The goals were then to establish the structures and organizations of genes in methanogens, and to develop the genetic technologies needed to investigate and dissect methanogen gene expression and regulation in vivo. By cloning and sequencing, we established the gene and operon structures of all of the “methane” genes that encode the enzymes that catalyze methane biosynthesis from carbon dioxide and hydrogen. This work identified unique sequences in the methane gene that we designated mcrA, that encodes the largest subunit of methyl-coenzyme M reductase, that could be used to identify methanogen DNA and establish methanogen phylogenetic relationships. McrA sequences are now the accepted standard and used extensively as hybridization probes to identify and quantify methanogens in environmental research. With the methane genes in hand, we used northern blot and then later whole-genome microarray hybridization analyses to establish how growth phase and substrate availability regulated methane gene expression in Methanobacterium thermautotrophicus ΔH (now Methanothermobacter thermautotrophicus). Isoenzymes or pairs of functionally equivalent enzymes catalyze several steps in the hydrogen-dependent reduction of carbon dioxide to methane. We established that hydrogen availability determine which of these pairs of methane genes is expressed and therefore which of the alternative enzymes is employed to catalyze methane biosynthesis under different environmental conditions. As were unable to establish a reliable genetic system for M. thermautotrophicus, we developed in vitro transcription as an alternative system to investigate methanogen gene expression and regulation. This led to the discovery that an archaeal protein

  5. The population genetics of cooperative gene regulation

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Changes in gene regulatory networks drive the evolution of phenotypic diversity both within and between species. Rewiring of transcriptional networks is achieved either by changes to transcription factor binding sites or by changes to the physical interactions among transcription factor proteins. It has been suggested that the evolution of cooperative binding among factors can facilitate the adaptive rewiring of a regulatory network. Results We use a population-genetic model to explore when cooperative binding of transcription factors is favored by evolution, and what effects cooperativity then has on the adaptive re-writing of regulatory networks. We consider a pair of transcription factors that regulate multiple targets and overlap in the sets of target genes they regulate. We show that, under stabilising selection, cooperative binding between the transcription factors is favoured provided the amount of overlap between their target genes exceeds a threshold. The value of this threshold depends on several population-genetic factors: strength of selection on binding sites, cost of pleiotropy associated with protein-protein interactions, rates of mutation and population size. Once it is established, we find that cooperative binding of transcription factors significantly accelerates the adaptive rewiring of transcriptional networks under positive selection. We compare our qualitative predictions to systematic data on Saccharomyces cerevisiae transcription factors, their binding sites, and their protein-protein interactions. Conclusions Our study reveals a rich set of evolutionary dynamics driven by a tradeoff between the beneficial effects of cooperative binding at targets shared by a pair of factors, and the detrimental effects of cooperative binding for non-shared targets. We find that cooperative regulation will evolve when transcription factors share a sufficient proportion of their target genes. These findings help to explain empirical pattens in

  6. The promise of gene therapy in gastrointestinal and liver diseases

    PubMed Central

    Prieto, J; Herraiz, M; Sangro, B; Qian, C; Mazzolini, G; Melero, I; Ruiz, J

    2003-01-01

    Gene therapy consists of the transfer of genetic material to cells to achieve a therapeutic goal. In the field of gastroenterology and hepatology gene therapy has produced considerable expectation as a potential tool in the management of conditions that lack effective therapy including non-resectable neoplasms of the liver, pancreas and gastrointestinal tract, chronic viral hepatitis unresponsive to interferon therapy, liver cirrhosis, and inflammatory bowel disease. PMID:12651882

  7. Gene regulation by phosphate in enteric bacteria.

    PubMed

    Wanner, B L

    1993-01-01

    The Escherichia coli phosphate (PHO) regulon includes 31 (or more) genes arranged in eight separate operons. All are coregulated by environmental (extra-cellular) phosphate and are probably involved in phosphorus assimilation. Pi control of these genes requires the sensor PhoR, the response regulator PhoB, the binding protein-dependent Pi-specific transporter Pst, and the accessory protein PhoU. During Pi limitation, PhoR turns on genes of the PHO regulon by phosphorylating PhoB that in turn activates transcription by binding to promoters that share an 18-base consensus PHO Box. When Pi is in excess, PhoR, Pst, and PhoU together turn off the PHO regulon, presumably by dephosphorylating PhoB. In addition, two Pi-independent controls that may be forms of cross regulation turn on the PHO regulon in the absence of PhoR. The sensor CreC, formerly called PhoM, phosphorylates PhoB in response to some (unknown) catabolite, while acetyl phosphate may directly phosphorylate PhoB. Cross regulation of the PHO regulon by CreC and acetyl phosphate may be examples of underlying control mechanisms important for the general (global) control of cell growth and metabolism.

  8. A Novel Gene Gun-Mediated IL-12 Gene Therapy for Breast Cancer

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1999-10-01

    The overall goal of our research is to develop an immunological approach for breast cancer gene therapy . The results of the first year study...described in our previous Annual Report, show that gene gun-mediated Th-12 gene therapy is effective against breast tumors in mouse models. During the second...effect of IL-l2 gene therapy against 4T1 tumor is not mediated by T cells, but rather involves NK cells. From several different immunomodulatory genes

  9. Customized biomaterials to augment chondrocyte gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Aguilar, Izath Nizeet; Trippel, Stephen; Shi, Shuiliang; Bonassar, Lawrence J

    2017-02-07

    A persistent challenge in enhancing gene therapy is the transient availability of the target gene product. This is particularly true in tissue engineering applications. The transient exposure of cells to the product could be insufficient to promote tissue regeneration. Here we report the development of a new material engineered to have a high affinity for a therapeutic gene product. We focus on insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) for its highly anabolic effects on many tissues such as spinal cord, heart, brain and cartilage. One of the ways that tissues store IGF-I is through a group of insulin like growth factor binding proteins (IGFBPs), such as IGFBP-5. We grafted the IGF-I binding peptide sequence from IGFBP-5 onto alginate in order to retain the endogenous IGF-I produced by transfected chondrocytes. This novel material bound IGF-I and released the growth factor for at least 30days in culture. We found that this binding enhanced the biosynthesis of transfected cells up to 19-fold. These data demonstrate the coordinated engineering of cell behavior and material chemistry to greatly enhance extracellular matrix synthesis and tissue assembly, and can serve as a template for the enhanced performance of other therapeutic proteins.

  10. Central Leptin Gene Therapy to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk Factors

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-03-01

    W81XWH-04-1-0701 TITLE: Central Leptin Gene Therapy to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk Factors PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Urszula T. Iwaniec...CONTRACT NUMBER Central Leptin Gene Therapy to Reduce Breast Cancer Risk Factors 5b. GRANT NUMBER W81XWH-04-1-0701 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER...control of obesity through centrally administered, recombinant adeno-associated virus leptin gene (rAAV-lep) therapy will decrease the incidence of

  11. Progresses towards safe and efficient gene therapy vectors.

    PubMed

    Chira, Sergiu; Jackson, Carlo S; Oprea, Iulian; Ozturk, Ferhat; Pepper, Michael S; Diaconu, Iulia; Braicu, Cornelia; Raduly, Lajos-Zsolt; Calin, George A; Berindan-Neagoe, Ioana

    2015-10-13

    The emergence of genetic engineering at the beginning of the 1970's opened the era of biomedical technologies, which aims to improve human health using genetic manipulation techniques in a clinical context. Gene therapy represents an innovating and appealing strategy for treatment of human diseases, which utilizes vehicles or vectors for delivering therapeutic genes into the patients' body. However, a few past unsuccessful events that negatively marked the beginning of gene therapy resulted in the need for further studies regarding the design and biology of gene therapy vectors, so that this innovating treatment approach can successfully move from bench to bedside. In this paper, we review the major gene delivery vectors and recent improvements made in their design meant to overcome the issues that commonly arise with the use of gene therapy vectors. At the end of the manuscript, we summarized the main advantages and disadvantages of common gene therapy vectors and we discuss possible future directions for potential therapeutic vectors.

  12. Regulation of gene expression in human tendinopathy

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Chronic tendon injuries, also known as tendinopathies, are common among professional and recreational athletes. These injuries result in a significant amount of morbidity and health care expenditure, yet little is known about the molecular mechanisms leading to tendinopathy. Methods We have used histological evaluation and molecular profiling to determine gene expression changes in 23 human patients undergoing surgical procedures for the treatment of chronic tendinopathy. Results Diseased tendons exhibit altered extracellular matrix, fiber disorientation, increased cellular content and vasculature, and the absence of inflammatory cells. Global gene expression profiling identified 983 transcripts with significantly different expression patterns in the diseased tendons. Global pathway analysis further suggested altered expression of extracellular matrix proteins and the lack of an appreciable inflammatory response. Conclusions Identification of the pathways and genes that are differentially regulated in tendinopathy samples will contribute to our understanding of the disease and the development of novel therapeutics. PMID:21539748

  13. The Growing Regulation of Conversion Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Drescher, Jack; Schwartz, Alan; Casoy, Flávio; McIntosh, Christopher A.; Hurley, Brian; Ashley, Kenneth; Barber, Mary; Goldenberg, David; Herbert, Sarah E.; Lothwell, Lorraine E.; Mattson, Marlin R.; McAfee, Scot G.; Pula, Jack; Rosario, Vernon; Tompkins, D. Andrew

    2016-01-01

    Conversion therapies are any treatments, including individual talk therapy, behavioral (e.g. aversive stimuli), group therapy or milieu (e.g. “retreats or inpatient treatments” relying on all of the above methods) treatments, which attempt to change an individual’s sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual. However these practices have been repudiated by major mental health organizations because of increasing evidence that they are ineffective and may cause harm to patients and their families who fail to change. At present, California, New Jersey, Oregon, Illinois, Washington, DC, and the Canadian Province of Ontario have passed legislation banning conversion therapy for minors and an increasing number of US States are considering similar bans. In April 2015, the Obama administration also called for a ban on conversion therapies for minors. The growing trend toward banning conversion therapies creates challenges for licensing boards and ethics committees, most of which are unfamiliar with the issues raised by complaints against conversion therapists. This paper reviews the history of conversion therapy practices as well as clinical, ethical and research issues they raise. With this information, state licensing boards, ethics committees and other regulatory bodies will be better able to adjudicate complaints from members of the public who have been exposed to conversion therapies. PMID:27754500

  14. Radioiodine therapy of thyroid carcinoma following Pax-8 gene transfer.

    PubMed

    Mu, D; Huang, R; Ma, X; Li, S; Kuang, A

    2012-04-01

    The thyroid transcription factor Pax-8 could bind with the promoter/enhancer of thyroid-specific genes such as thyroglobulin (Tg), thyroperoxidase (TPO) and sodium iodide symporter (NIS), and regulate the expression of these proteins in thyrocyte. Promoting iodide accumulation in tumor cells by re-expression of Pax-8 provides a possible strategy for radioiodine therapy of tumor. Therefore, we investigated the effect of Pax-8 gene transfer on radioiodine therapy of thyroid carcinoma. The human Pax-8 gene was transfected into the human thyroid carcinoma (K1 and F133) cells by the recombinant adenovirus vector. Although the NIS mRNA was not detected, the expression of mRNA and proteins of Tg and TPO in AdPax-8-infected F133 cells were activated by Pax-8. Iodide uptake in thyroid carcinoma cells was reactivated by Pax-8 (increasing 3.3-fold in K1 cells and 5.7-fold in F133 cells). Moreover, Pax-8 promoted iodide organification and the retention time of iodine in Pax-8-expressing cells apparently prolonged in vitro and in vivo (P<0.05). Pax-8-expressing thyroid carcinoma cells were selectively killed by radioiodine. The AdPax-8-infected tumors in vivo clearly visualized in scanning images at 12 h after administration of radioiodine. These results indicate that Pax-8 can promote iodide uptake, and specifically prolong the retention time of iodide in thyroid cancer in vitro and in vivo by promoting the expression of TPO and Tg proteins. Pax-8 gene transfection may lead to effective radioiodine therapy of tumor.

  15. Prospectives for gene therapy of retinal degenerations.

    PubMed

    Thumann, Gabriele

    2012-08-01

    Retinal degenerations encompass a large number of diseases in which the retina and associated retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells progressively degenerate leading to severe visual disorders or blindness. Retinal degenerations can be divided into two groups, a group in which the defect has been linked to a specific gene and a second group that has a complex etiology that includes environmental and genetic influences. The first group encompasses a number of relatively rare diseases with the most prevalent being Retinitis pigmentosa that affects approximately 1 million individuals worldwide. Attempts have been made to correct the defective gene by transfecting the appropriate cells with the wild-type gene and while these attempts have been successful in animal models, human gene therapy for these inherited retinal degenerations has only begun recently and the results are promising. To the second group belong glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy (DR). These retinal degenerations have a genetic component since they occur more often in families with affected probands but they are also linked to environmental factors, specifically elevated intraocular pressure, age and high blood sugar levels respectively. The economic and medical impact of these three diseases can be assessed by the number of individuals affected; AMD affects over 30 million, DR over 40 million and glaucoma over 65 million individuals worldwide. The basic defect in these diseases appears to be the relative lack of a neurogenic environment; the neovascularization that often accompanies these diseases has suggested that a decrease in pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), at least in part, may be responsible for the neurodegeneration since PEDF is not only an effective neurogenic and neuroprotective agent but also a potent inhibitor of neovascularization. In the last few years inhibitors of vascularization, especially antibodies against vascular endothelial cell

  16. Prospectives for Gene Therapy of Retinal Degenerations

    PubMed Central

    Thumann, Gabriele

    2012-01-01

    Retinal degenerations encompass a large number of diseases in which the retina and associated retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) cells progressively degenerate leading to severe visual disorders or blindness. Retinal degenerations can be divided into two groups, a group in which the defect has been linked to a specific gene and a second group that has a complex etiology that includes environmental and genetic influences. The first group encompasses a number of relatively rare diseases with the most prevalent being Retinitis pigmentosa that affects approximately 1 million individuals worldwide. Attempts have been made to correct the defective gene by transfecting the appropriate cells with the wild-type gene and while these attempts have been successful in animal models, human gene therapy for these inherited retinal degenerations has only begun recently and the results are promising. To the second group belong glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and diabetic retinopathy (DR). These retinal degenerations have a genetic component since they occur more often in families with affected probands but they are also linked to environmental factors, specifically elevated intraocular pressure, age and high blood sugar levels respectively. The economic and medical impact of these three diseases can be assessed by the number of individuals affected; AMD affects over 30 million, DR over 40 million and glaucoma over 65 million individuals worldwide. The basic defect in these diseases appears to be the relative lack of a neurogenic environment; the neovascularization that often accompanies these diseases has suggested that a decrease in pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF), at least in part, may be responsible for the neurodegeneration since PEDF is not only an effective neurogenic and neuroprotective agent but also a potent inhibitor of neovascularization. In the last few years inhibitors of vascularization, especially antibodies against vascular endothelial cell

  17. Current genome editing tools in gene therapy: new approaches to treat cancer.

    PubMed

    Shuvalov, Oleg; Petukhov, Alexey; Daks, Alexandra; Fedorova, Olga; Ermakov, Alexander; Melino, Gerry; Barlev, Nickolai A

    2015-01-01

    Gene therapy suggests a promising approach to treat genetic diseases by applying genes as pharmaceuticals. Cancer is a complex disease, which strongly depends on a particular genetic make-up and hence can be treated with gene therapy. From about 2,000 clinical trials carried out so far, more than 60% were cancer targeted. Development of precise and effective gene therapy approaches is intimately connected with achievements in the molecular biology techniques. The field of gene therapy was recently revolutionized by the introduction of "programmable" nucleases, including ZFNs, TALENs, and CRISPR, which target specific genomic loci with high efficacy and precision. Furthermore, when combined with DNA transposons for the delivery purposes into cells, these programmable nucleases represent a promising alternative to the conventional viral-mediated gene delivery. In addition to "programmable" nucleases, a new class of TALE- and CRISPR-based "artificial transcription effectors" has been developed to mediate precise regulation of specific genes. In sum, these new molecular tools may be used in a wide plethora of gene therapy strategies. This review highlights the current status of novel genome editing tools and discusses their suitability and perspectives in respect to cancer gene therapy studies.

  18. Progress in nonviral gene therapy for breast cancer and what comes next?

    PubMed

    Bottai, Giulia; Truffi, Marta; Corsi, Fabio; Santarpia, Libero

    2017-05-01

    The possibility of correcting defective genes and modulating gene expression through gene therapy has emerged as a promising treatment strategy for breast cancer. Furthermore, the relevance of tumor immune microenvironment in supporting the oncogenic process has paved the way for novel immunomodulatory applications of gene therapy. Areas covered: In this review, the authors describe the most relevant delivery systems, focusing on nonviral vectors, along with the description of the major approaches used to modify target cells, including gene transfer, RNA interference (RNAi), and epigenetic regulation. Furthermore, they highlight innovative therapeutic strategies and the application of gene therapy in clinical trials for breast cancer. Expert opinion: Gene therapy has the potential to impact breast cancer research. Further efforts are required to increase the clinical application of RNAi-based therapeutics, especially in combination with conventional treatments. Innovative strategies, including genome editing and stem cell-based systems, may contribute to translate gene therapy into clinical practice. Immune-based approaches have emerged as an attractive therapeutic opportunity for selected breast cancer patients. However, several challenges need to be addressed before considering gene therapy as an actual option for the treatment of breast cancer.

  19. Gene regulation in parthenocarpic tomato fruit

    PubMed Central

    Martinelli, Federico; Uratsu, Sandra L.; Reagan, Russell L.; Chen, Ying; Tricoli, David; Fiehn, Oliver; Rocke, David M.; Gasser, Charles S.; Dandekar, Abhaya M.

    2009-01-01

    Parthenocarpy is potentially a desirable trait for many commercially grown fruits if undesirable changes to structure, flavour, or nutrition can be avoided. Parthenocarpic transgenic tomato plants (cv MicroTom) were obtained by the regulation of genes for auxin synthesis (iaaM) or responsiveness (rolB) driven by DefH9 or the INNER NO OUTER (INO) promoter from Arabidopsis thaliana. Fruits at a breaker stage were analysed at a transcriptomic and metabolomic level using microarrays, real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and a Pegasus III TOF (time of flight) mass spectrometer. Although differences were observed in the shape of fully ripe fruits, no clear correlation could be made between the number of seeds, transgene, and fruit size. Expression of auxin synthesis or responsiveness genes by both of these promoters produced seedless parthenocarpic fruits. Eighty-three percent of the genes measured showed no significant differences in expression due to parthenocarpy. The remaining 17% with significant variation (P <0.05) (1748 genes) were studied by assigning a predicted function (when known) based on BLAST to the TAIR database. Among them several genes belong to cell wall, hormone metabolism and response (auxin in particular), and metabolism of sugars and lipids. Up-regulation of lipid transfer proteins and differential expression of several indole-3-acetic acid (IAA)- and ethylene-associated genes were observed in transgenic parthenocarpic fruits. Despite differences in several fatty acids, amino acids, and other metabolites, the fundamental metabolic profile remains unchanged. This work showed that parthenocarpy with ovule-specific alteration of auxin synthesis or response driven by the INO promoter could be effectively applied where such changes are commercially desirable. PMID:19700496

  20. [Development of gene therapy in major brain diseases].

    PubMed

    Fan, Li; Jiang, Xin-guo

    2010-09-01

    In recent years, the development of molecular biology and medicine has prompted the research of gene therapy for brain diseases. In this review, we summarized the current gene therapy approaches of major brain diseases. Against the pathogenesis of major brain diseases, including brain tumors, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and cerebrovascular disorders, there are several effective gene therapy strategies. It is no doubt that, gene therapy, as a novel treatment, is of great significance for understanding the causes, as well as comprehensive treatment for brain diseases.

  1. Recombinant AAV-mediated gene transfer to the retina: gene therapy perspectives.

    PubMed

    Rolling, F

    2004-10-01

    Retinal degenerative diseases such as retinal macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa constitute a broad group of diseases that all share one critical feature, the progressive apoptotic loss of cells in the retina. There is currently no effective treatment available by which the course of these disorders can be modified, and visual dysfunction often progresses to total blindness. Gene therapy represents an attractive approach to treating retinal degeneration because the eye is easily accessible and allows local application of therapeutic vectors with reduced risk of systemic effects. Furthermore, transgene expression within the retina and effects of treatments may be monitored by a variety of noninvasive examinations. An increasing number of strategies for molecular treatment of retinal disease rely on recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) as a therapeutic gene delivery vector. Before rAAV-mediated gene therapy for retinal degeneration becomes a reality, there are a number of important requirements that include: (1) evaluation of different rAAV serotypes, (2) screening of vectors in large animals in order to ensure that they mediate safe and long-term gene expression, (3) appropriate regulation of therapeutic gene expression, (4) evaluation of vectors carrying a therapeutic gene in relevant animal models, (5) identification of suitable patients, and finally (6) manufacture of clinical grade vector. All these steps towards gene therapy are still being explored. Outcomes of these studies will be discussed in the order in which they occur, from vector studies to preclinical assessment of the therapeutic potential of rAAV in animal models of retinal degeneration.

  2. Structure and regulation of the envoplakin gene.

    PubMed

    Määttä, A; Ruhrberg, C; Watt, F M

    2000-06-30

    Envoplakin, a member of the plakin family of proteins, is a component of desmosomes and the epidermal cornified envelope. To understand how envoplakin expression is regulated, we have analyzed the structure of the mouse envoplakin gene and characterized the promoters of both the human and mouse genes. The mouse gene consists of 22 exons and maps to chromosome 11E1, syntenic to the location of the human gene on 17q25. The exon-intron structure of the mouse envoplakin gene is common to all members of the plakin family: the N-terminal protein domain is encoded by 21 small exons, and the central rod domain and the C-terminal globular domain are coded by a single large exon. The C terminus shows the highest sequence conservation between mouse and human envoplakins and between envoplakin and the other family members. The N terminus is also conserved, with sequence homology extending to Drosophila Kakapo. A region between nucleotides -101 and 288 was necessary for promoter activity in transiently transfected primary keratinocytes. This region is highly conserved between the human and mouse genes and contains at least two different positively acting elements identified by site-directed mutagenesis and electrophoretic mobility shift assays. Mutation of a GC box binding Sp1 and Sp3 proteins or a combined E box and Krüppel-like element interacting with unidentified nuclear proteins virtually abolished promoter activity. 600 base pairs of the mouse upstream sequence was sufficient to drive expression of a beta-galactosidase reporter gene in the suprabasal layers of epidermis, esophagus, and forestomach of transgenic mice. Thus, we have identified a regulatory region in the envoplakin gene that can account for the expression pattern of the endogenous protein in stratified squamous epithelia.

  3. Requirements for Clinical Trials with Gene Therapy and Transplant Products in Switzerland.

    PubMed

    Marti, Andreas

    2015-01-01

    This chapter aims to describe and summarize the regulation of gene and cell therapy products in Switzerland and its legal basis. Product types are briefly described, as are Swiss-specific terminologies such as the term "transplant product," which means products manufactured from cells, tissues, or even whole organs. Although some parts of this chapter may show a guideline character, they are not legally binding, but represent the current thinking of Swissmedic, the Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products. As so far the experience with marketing approval of gene therapy and cell therapy products in Switzerland is limited, this chapter focuses on the regulation of clinical trials conducted with these products. Quality, nonclinical, and clinical aspects are summarized separately for gene therapy products and transplant products.

  4. Targeted gene repair: the ups and downs of a promising gene therapy approach.

    PubMed

    de Semir, David; Aran, Josep M

    2006-08-01

    As a novel form of molecular medicine based on direct actions over the genes, targeted gene repair has raised consideration recently above classical gene therapy strategies based on genetic augmentation or complementation. Targeted gene repair relies on the local induction of the cell's endogenous DNA repair mechanisms to attain a therapeutic gene conversion event within the genome of the diseased cell. Successful repair has been achieved both in vitro and in vivo with a variety of corrective molecules ranging from oligonucleotides (chimeraplasts, modified single-stranded oligonucleotides, triplex-forming oligonucleotides), to small DNA fragments (small fragment homologous replacement (SFHR)), and even viral vectors (AAV-based). However, controversy on the consistency and lack of reproducibility of early experiments regarding frequencies and persistence of targeted gene repair, particularly for chimeraplasty, has flecked the field. Nevertheless, several hurdles such as inefficient nuclear uptake of the corrective molecules, and misleading assessment of targeted repair frequencies have been identified and are being addressed. One of the key bottlenecks for exploiting the overall potential of the different targeted gene repair modalities is the lack of a detailed knowledge of their mechanisms of action at the molecular level. Several studies are now focusing on the assessment of the specific repair pathway(s) involved (homologous recombination, mismatch repair, etc.), devising additional strategies to increase their activity (using chemotherapeutic drugs, chimeric nucleases, etc.), and assessing the influence of the cell cycle in the regulation of the repair process. Until therapeutic correction frequencies for single gene disorders are reached both in cellular and animal models, precision and undesired side effects of this promising gene therapy approach will not be thoroughly evaluated.

  5. [The gene therapy for a patient with ADA deficiency; report of the first gene therapy trial in Japan].

    PubMed

    Ariga, T; Kawamura, N; Sakiyama, Y

    1997-06-01

    Since the first gene therapy clinical trial for an ADA deficient patient was performed in September 1990, 10 ADA deficient patients have been enrolled in gene therapy clinical trial. We have been performing the first gene therapy trial in Japan for a 5 year boy with ADA deficiency since August 1995. Activated T cells from the patient's peripheral mononuclear cells were transduced by a retrovirus vector, LASN, which contained cDNA of human ADA gene, and re-infused to him intravenously after 7-11 days. We have already performed 10 cycles of the therapy for the patient. Here, we report the successful results of the gene therapy with laboratory and clinical evaluation. Furthermore, we overview the results of gene therapy for ADA deficient patients which were recently reported from 4 other groups.

  6. Improved animal models for testing gene therapy for atherosclerosis.

    PubMed

    Du, Liang; Zhang, Jingwan; De Meyer, Guido R Y; Flynn, Rowan; Dichek, David A

    2014-04-01

    Gene therapy delivered to the blood vessel wall could augment current therapies for atherosclerosis, including systemic drug therapy and stenting. However, identification of clinically useful vectors and effective therapeutic transgenes remains at the preclinical stage. Identification of effective vectors and transgenes would be accelerated by availability of animal models that allow practical and expeditious testing of vessel-wall-directed gene therapy. Such models would include humanlike lesions that develop rapidly in vessels that are amenable to efficient gene delivery. Moreover, because human atherosclerosis develops in normal vessels, gene therapy that prevents atherosclerosis is most logically tested in relatively normal arteries. Similarly, gene therapy that causes atherosclerosis regression requires gene delivery to an existing lesion. Here we report development of three new rabbit models for testing vessel-wall-directed gene therapy that either prevents or reverses atherosclerosis. Carotid artery intimal lesions in these new models develop within 2-7 months after initiation of a high-fat diet and are 20-80 times larger than lesions in a model we described previously. Individual models allow generation of lesions that are relatively rich in either macrophages or smooth muscle cells, permitting testing of gene therapy strategies targeted at either cell type. Two of the models include gene delivery to essentially normal arteries and will be useful for identifying strategies that prevent lesion development. The third model generates lesions rapidly in vector-naïve animals and can be used for testing gene therapy that promotes lesion regression. These models are optimized for testing helper-dependent adenovirus (HDAd)-mediated gene therapy; however, they could be easily adapted for testing of other vectors or of different types of molecular therapies, delivered directly to the blood vessel wall. Our data also supports the promise of HDAd to deliver long

  7. Nanoparticles for cancer gene therapy: Recent advances, challenges, and strategies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Kui; Kievit, Forrest M; Zhang, Miqin

    2016-12-01

    Compared to conventional treatments, gene therapy offers a variety of advantages for cancer treatment including high potency and specificity, low off-target toxicity, and delivery of multiple genes that concurrently target cancer tumorigenesis, recurrence, and drug resistance. In the past decades, gene therapy has undergone remarkable progress, and is now poised to become a first line therapy for cancer. Among various gene delivery systems, nanoparticles have attracted much attention because of their desirable characteristics including low toxicity profiles, well-controlled and high gene delivery efficiency, and multi-functionalities. This review provides an overview on gene therapeutics and gene delivery technologies, and highlight recent advances, challenges and insights into the design and the utility of nanoparticles in gene therapy for cancer treatment.

  8. Gene Therapy and Gene Editing for the Corneal Dystrophies.

    PubMed

    Williams, Keryn A; Irani, Yazad D

    2016-01-01

    Despite ever-increasing understanding of the genetic underpinnings of many corneal dystrophies, gene therapy designed to ameliorate disease has not yet been reported in any human patient. In this review, we explore the likely reasons for this apparent failure of translation. We identify the requirements for success: the genetic defect involved must have been identified and mapped, vision in the affected patient must be significantly impaired or likely to be impaired, no better or equivalently effective treatment must be available, the treatment must be capable of modulating corneal pathology, and delivery of the construct to the appropriate cell must be practicable. We consider which of the corneal dystrophies might be amenable to treatment by genetic manipulations, summarize existing therapeutic options for treatment, and explore gene editing using clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeat/Cas and other similar transformative technologies as the way of the future. We then summarize recent laboratory-based advances in gene delivery and the development of in vitro and in vivo models of the corneal dystrophies. Finally, we review recent experimental work that has increased our knowledge of the pathobiology of these conditions.

  9. Genetically engineering adenoviral vectors for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Coughlan, Lynda

    2014-01-01

    Adenoviral (Ad) vectors are commonly used for various gene therapy applications. Significant advances in the genetic engineering of Ad vectors in recent years has highlighted their potential for the treatment of metastatic disease. There are several methods to genetically modify the Ad genome to incorporate retargeting peptides which will redirect the natural tropism of the viruses, including homologous recombination in bacteria or yeast. However, homologous recombination in yeast is highly efficient and can be achieved without the need for extensive cloning strategies. In addition, the method does not rely on the presence of unique restriction sites within the Ad genome and the reagents required for this method are widely available and inexpensive. Large plasmids containing the entire adenoviral genome (~36 kbp) can be modified within Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast and genomes easily rescued in Escherichia coli hosts for analysis or amplification. A method for two-step homologous recombination in yeast is described in this chapter.

  10. Engineering AAV receptor footprints for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Madigan, Victoria J; Asokan, Aravind

    2016-06-01

    Adeno-associated viruses (AAV) are currently at the forefront of human gene therapy clinical trials as recombinant vectors. Significant progress has been made in elucidating the structure, biology and tropisms of different naturally occurring AAV isolates in the past decade. In particular, a spectrum of AAV capsid interactions with host receptors have been identified and characterized. These studies have enabled a better understanding of key determinants of AAV cell recognition and entry in different hosts. This knowledge is now being applied toward engineering new, lab-derived AAV capsids with favorable transduction profiles. The current review conveys a structural perspective of capsid-glycan interactions and provides a roadmap for generating synthetic strains by engineering AAV receptor footprints.

  11. Revertant mosaicism in skin: natural gene therapy

    PubMed Central

    Lai-Cheong, Joey E.; McGrath, John A.; Uitto, Jouni

    2011-01-01

    Revertant mosaicism is a naturally occurring phenomenon involving spontaneous correction of a pathogenic mutation in a somatic cell. Recent studies suggest that it is not a rare event and that it could be clinically relevant to phenotypic expression and patient treatment. Indeed, revertant cell therapy represents a potential “natural gene therapy” because in vivo reversion obviates the need for further genetic correction. Revertant mosaicism has been observed in several inherited conditions, including epidermolysis bullosa, a heterogeneous group of blistering skin disorders. These diseases provide a useful model for studying revertant mosaicism because of the visual and accessible nature of skin. This overview highlights the latest developments in revertant mosaicism and the translational implications germane to heritable skin disorders. PMID:21195026

  12. Gene and genon concept: coding versus regulation

    PubMed Central

    2007-01-01

    We analyse here the definition of the gene in order to distinguish, on the basis of modern insight in molecular biology, what the gene is coding for, namely a specific polypeptide, and how its expression is realized and controlled. Before the coding role of the DNA was discovered, a gene was identified with a specific phenotypic trait, from Mendel through Morgan up to Benzer. Subsequently, however, molecular biologists ventured to define a gene at the level of the DNA sequence in terms of coding. As is becoming ever more evident, the relations between information stored at DNA level and functional products are very intricate, and the regulatory aspects are as important and essential as the information coding for products. This approach led, thus, to a conceptual hybrid that confused coding, regulation and functional aspects. In this essay, we develop a definition of the gene that once again starts from the functional aspect. A cellular function can be represented by a polypeptide or an RNA. In the case of the polypeptide, its biochemical identity is determined by the mRNA prior to translation, and that is where we locate the gene. The steps from specific, but possibly separated sequence fragments at DNA level to that final mRNA then can be analysed in terms of regulation. For that purpose, we coin the new term “genon”. In that manner, we can clearly separate product and regulative information while keeping the fundamental relation between coding and function without the need to introduce a conceptual hybrid. In mRNA, the program regulating the expression of a gene is superimposed onto and added to the coding sequence in cis - we call it the genon. The complementary external control of a given mRNA by trans-acting factors is incorporated in its transgenon. A consequence of this definition is that, in eukaryotes, the gene is, in most cases, not yet present at DNA level. Rather, it is assembled by RNA processing, including differential splicing, from various

  13. [Gene replacement therapy in achromatopsia type 2].

    PubMed

    Mühlfriedel, R; Tanimoto, N; Seeliger, M W

    2014-03-01

    Achromatopsia is an autosomal recessive inherited retinal disease caused by a complete loss of cone photoreceptor function. About 80 % of achromatopsia patients show mutations in the alpha or beta subunit (A3 and B3) of the cGMP controlled cation channel CNG (cyclic nucleotide-gated channel) of cone photoreceptors. Homologous to the human disease, CNGA3 deficient mice reveal a loss of cone specific functionality leading to degeneration of affected cone photoreceptors. The Institute for Ophthalmic Research in Tübingen has now succeeded in curing achromatopsia ACHM2 in an animal model. In this article, we explain the recombinant adeno-associated virus-based approach in detail. Furthermore, applied non-invasive diagnostic techniques for quality and success control, ERG, SLO and OCT, are described. The success of the therapy is indicated by a restored cone photoreceptor function as well as the neuronal processing of retinal signals resulting in a specific, cone-mediated behaviour. The outstanding results derived from the animal model are the starting point for the first human translation of a gene therapy for achromatopsia in Germany.

  14. Virotherapy: cancer gene therapy at last?

    PubMed Central

    Bilsland, Alan E.; Spiliopoulou, Pavlina; Evans, T. R. Jeffry

    2016-01-01

    For decades, effective cancer gene therapy has been a tantalising prospect; for a therapeutic modality potentially able to elicit highly effective and selective responses, definitive efficacy outcomes have often seemed out of reach. However, steady progress in vector development and accumulated experience from previous clinical studies has finally led the field to its first licensed therapy. Following a pivotal phase III trial, Imlygic (talimogene laherparepvec/T-Vec) received US approval as a treatment for cutaneous and subcutaneous melanoma in October 2015, followed several weeks later by its European authorisation. These represent the first approvals for an oncolytic virotherapy. Imlygic is an advanced-generation herpesvirus-based vector optimised for oncolytic and immunomodulatory activities. Many other oncolytic agents currently remain in development, providing hope that current success will be followed by other diverse vectors that may ultimately come to constitute a new class of clinical anti-cancer agents. In this review, we discuss some of the key oncolytic viral agents developed in the adenovirus and herpesvirus classes, and the prospects for further enhancing their efficacy by combining them with novel immunotherapeutic approaches. PMID:27635234

  15. Human gene therapy and imaging in neurological diseases

    PubMed Central

    Jacobs, Andreas H.; Winkler, Alexandra; Castro, Maria G.; Lowenstein, Pedro

    2010-01-01

    Molecular imaging aims to assess non-invasively disease-specific biological and molecular processes in animal models and humans in vivo. Apart from precise anatomical localisation and quantification, the most intriguing advantage of such imaging is the opportunity it provides to investigate the time course (dynamics) of disease-specific molecular events in the intact organism. Further, molecular imaging can be used to address basic scientific questions, e.g. transcriptional regulation, signal transduction or protein/protein interaction, and will be essential in developing treatment strategies based on gene therapy. Most importantly, molecular imaging is a key technology in translational research, helping to develop experimental protocols which may later be applied to human patients. Over the past 20 years, imaging based on positron emission tomography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has been employed for the assessment and “phenotyping” of various neurological diseases, including cerebral ischaemia, neurodegeneration and brain gliomas. While in the past neuro-anatomical studies had to be performed post mortem, molecular imaging has ushered in the era of in vivo functional neuro-anatomy by allowing neuroscience to image structure, function, metabolism and molecular processes of the central nervous system in vivo in both health and disease. Recently, PET and MRI have been successfully utilised together in the non-invasive assessment of gene transfer and gene therapy in humans. To assess the efficiency of gene transfer, the same markers are being used in animals and humans, and have been applied for phenotyping human disease. Here, we review the imaging hallmarks of focal and disseminated neurological diseases, such as cerebral ischaemia, neurodegeneration and glioblastoma multiforme, as well as the attempts to translate gene therapy’s experimental knowledge into clinical applications and the way in which this process is being promoted through the use

  16. Vascular gene therapy in the 21st century.

    PubMed

    Clowes, A W

    1997-07-01

    The technology of gene transfer has developed rapidly and has been applied successfully as pharmacological therapy in animal models of human vascular disease. Human vascular gene therapy has not become a reality although clinical trials are starting. In the next century, gene therapy will find its place in the vascular physicians' armamentarium as new pharmacological targets are defined and new vectors devised for gene transfer. Vascular gene therapy, the use of gene transfer to treat diseases of the vascular system, excites the imagination and captures the public's attention because it promises at a single step almost magically to cure the previously uncurable. The goal has been elusive although the promise remains. What can we look forward to in the 21st century? Will the dream ever be realized or is it a fantasy that will always be out of reach? The sceptics argue that research into pharmacology continues to provide us with powerful drugs for the treatment of vascular disease. Why bother with gene transfer? Could not the same goals be achieved by more conventional means? These questions demand answers and adequate justification. In developing the response, we gain a clear understanding of the potential of gene therapy and thereby define a better set of objectives. Gene therapy in broad terms covers somatic cell and germ line gene therapy. Genetic manipulation of the germ line leads to the development of transgenic animals with specific genes that have been deleted or overexpressed; these animals are useful for the study of gene function. Their organs might also be of use for transplantation into humans. For example, transgenic pigs are being developed for this purpose(1). Although the study of transgenic animals and the field of germ line gene therapy are of great importance for vascular biology, they will not be covered here. This review will address vascular somatic gene therapy and will attempt to focus on potential targets, progress made in the last decade

  17. Tetracycline-inducible gene regulation in mycobacteria

    PubMed Central

    Blokpoel, Marian C. J.; Murphy, Helen N.; O'Toole, Ronan; Wiles, Siouxsie; Runn, Ellen S. C.; Stewart, Graham R.; Young, Douglas B.; Robertson, Brian D.

    2005-01-01

    A system for the tetracycline-inducible regulation of gene expression in mycobacteria has been developed. We have sub-cloned the tetRO region from the Corynebacterium glutamicum TetZ locus into a mycobacterial shuttle plasmid, making expression of genes cloned downstream of tetRO responsive to tetracycline. Using the luxAB-encoded luciferase from Vibrio harveyi as a reporter (pMind-Lx), we observed a 40-fold increase in light output from Mycobacterium smegmatis cultures 2 h after adding 20 ng ml−1 of tetracycline. Similarly, exposure to the drug resulted in up to 20-fold increase in relative light units from M.bovis BCG carrying the reporter construct, and a 10-fold increase for M.tuberculosis. Tetracycline induction was demonstrated in log and stationary phase cultures. To evaluate whether this system is amenable to use in vivo, J774 macrophages were infected with M.bovis BCG[pMind-Lx], treated with amikacin to kill extracellular bacteria, and then incubated with tetracycline. A 10-fold increase in light output was measured after 24 h, indicating that intracellular bacteria are accessible and responsive to exogenously added tetracycline. To test the use of the tetracycline-inducible system for conditional gene silencing, mycobacteria were transformed with a pMind construct with tetRO driving expression of antisense RNA for the ftsZ gene. Bacterial cells containing the antisense construct formed filaments after 24 h exposure to tetracycline. These results demonstrate the potential of this tetracycline-regulated system for the manipulation of mycobacterial gene expression inside and outside cells. PMID:15687380

  18. New approaches to gene and cell therapy for hemophilia.

    PubMed

    Ohmori, T; Mizukami, H; Ozawa, K; Sakata, Y; Nishimura, S

    2015-06-01

    Hemophilia is considered suitable for gene therapy because it is caused by a single gene abnormality, and therapeutic coagulation factor levels may vary across a broad range. Recent success of hemophilia B gene therapy with an adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector in a clinical trial showed the real prospect that, through gene therapy, a cure for hemophilia may become a reality. However, AAV-mediated gene therapy is not applicable to patients with hemophilia A at present, and neutralizing antibodies against AAV reduce the efficacy of AAV-mediated strategies. Because patients that benefit from AAV treatment (hemophilia B without neutralizing antibodies) are estimated to represent only 15% of total patients with hemophilia, the development of basic technologies for hemophilia A and those that result in higher therapeutic effects are critical. In this review, we present an outline of gene therapy methods for hemophilia, including the transition of technical developments thus far and our novel techniques.

  19. Advances in gene therapy for ADA-deficient SCID.

    PubMed

    Aiuti, Alessandro

    2002-10-01

    Adenosine deaminase (ADA)-deficient severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) was the first inherited disease treated with gene therapy. The pilot gene therapy studies demonstrated the safety, therapeutic potential and limitations of ADA gene transfer into hematopoietic cells using retroviral vectors. This review describes the latest progress in ADA-SCID dinical trials using peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) and hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs). PBL gene therapy was able to restore T-cell functions after discontinuation of ADA enzyme replacement therapy, but only partially corrected the purine metabolic defect. The development of improved HSC gene transfer protocols, combined with low intensity conditioning, allowed full correction of the immunological and metabolic ADA defects, with clinic benefit. These results have important implications for future applications of gene therapy in other disorders involving the hemapoietic system.

  20. A light-switchable bidirectional expression module allowing simultaneous regulation of multiple genes.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xianjun; Li, Ting; Wang, Xue; Yang, Yi

    2015-10-02

    Several light-regulated genetic circuits have been applied to spatiotemporally control transgene expression in mammalian cells. However, simultaneous regulation of multiple genes using one genetic device by light has not yet been reported. In this study, we engineered a bidirectional expression module based on LightOn system. Our data showed that both reporter genes could be regulated at defined and quantitative levels. Simultaneous regulation of four genes was further achieved in cultured cells and mice. Additionally, we successfully utilized the bidirectional expression module to monitor the expression of a suicide gene, showing potential for photodynamic gene therapy. Collectively, we provide a robust and useful tool to simultaneously control multiple genes expression by light, which will be widely used in biomedical research and biotechnology.

  1. Following the Footsteps of Chlamydial Gene Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Domman, D.; Horn, M.

    2015-01-01

    Regulation of gene expression ensures an organism responds to stimuli and undergoes proper development. Although the regulatory networks in bacteria have been investigated in model microorganisms, nearly nothing is known about the evolution and plasticity of these networks in obligate, intracellular bacteria. The phylum Chlamydiae contains a vast array of host-associated microbes, including several human pathogens. The Chlamydiae are unique among obligate, intracellular bacteria as they undergo a complex biphasic developmental cycle in which large swaths of genes are temporally regulated. Coupled with the low number of transcription factors, these organisms offer a model to study the evolution of regulatory networks in intracellular organisms. We provide the first comprehensive analysis exploring the diversity and evolution of regulatory networks across the phylum. We utilized a comparative genomics approach to construct predicted coregulatory networks, which unveiled genus- and family-specific regulatory motifs and architectures, most notably those of virulence-associated genes. Surprisingly, our analysis suggests that few regulatory components are conserved across the phylum, and those that are conserved are involved in the exploitation of the intracellular niche. Our study thus lends insight into a component of chlamydial evolution that has otherwise remained largely unexplored. PMID:26424812

  2. Development of mitochondrial gene replacement therapy.

    PubMed

    Khan, Shaharyar M; Bennett, James P

    2004-08-01

    Many "classic" mitochondrial diseases have been described that arise from single homoplasmic mutations in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). These diseases typically affect nonmitotic tissues (brain, retina, muscle), present with variable phenotypes, can appear sporadically, and are untreatable. Evolving evidence implicates mtDNA abnormalities in diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and type II diabetes, but specific causal mutations for these conditions remain to be defined. Understanding the mtDNA genotype-phenotype relationships and developing specific treatment for mtDNA-based diseases is hampered by inability to manipulate the mitochondrial genome. We present a novel protein transduction technology ("protofection") that allows insertion and expression of the human mitochondrial genome into mitochondria of living cells. With protofection, the mitochondrial genotype can be altered, or exogenous genes can be introduced to be expressed and either retained in mitochondria or be directed to other organelles. Protofection also delivers mtDNA in vivo, opening the way to rational development of mitochondrial gene replacement therapy of mtDNA-based diseases.

  3. Gene replacement therapy for retinal CNG channelopathies.

    PubMed

    Schön, Christian; Biel, Martin; Michalakis, Stylianos

    2013-10-01

    Visual phototransduction relies on the function of cyclic nucleotide-gated channels in the rod and cone photoreceptor outer segment plasma membranes. The role of these ion channels is to translate light-triggered changes in the second messenger cyclic guanosine 3'-5'-monophosphate levels into an electrical signal that is further processed within the retinal network and then sent to higher visual centers. Rod and cone photoreceptors express distinct CNG channels. The rod photoreceptor CNG channel is composed of one CNGB1 and three CNGA1 subunits, whereas the cone channel is formed by one CNGB3 and three CNGA3 subunits. Mutations in any of these channel subunits result in severe and currently untreatable retinal degenerative diseases like retinitis pigmentosa or achromatopsia. In this review, we provide an overview of the human diseases and relevant animal models of CNG channelopathies. Furthermore, we summarize recent results from preclinical gene therapy studies using adeno-associated viral vectors and discuss the efficacy and translational potential of these gene therapeutic approaches.

  4. Selection of optimal combinations of target genes for therapeutic multi-gene silencing based on miRNA co-regulation.

    PubMed

    Malek, A; Gyorffy, B; Catapano, C V; Schäfer, R

    2013-05-01

    Therapeutic gene silencing is a promising approach for treatment of cancer. Despite substantial efforts, however, only few such therapeutic methods have been clinically tested. The heterogeneity in gene expression profiles among malignant tissues and the dynamic control of gene expression in individual tumors makes identifying universal and effective targets a challenge. Further development of gene silencing therapy requires new approaches to comprehend and manage gene expression in cancer cells. In this study, we proposed and evaluated experimentally a new approach to design multi-gene silencing therapy. Using a simplified model of gene expression control, we show that genes commonly regulated by the same microRNA represent optimal combinations of targets for small hairpin RNA/small interfering RNA-based gene silencing. The proposed method of target gene selection and co-silencing can be explored as an algorithm for personalized cancer gene therapy.

  5. Modifier genes: Moving from pathogenesis to therapy.

    PubMed

    McCabe, Edward R B

    2017-09-01

    This commentary will focus on how we can use our knowledge about the complexity of human disease and its pathogenesis to identify novel approaches to therapy. We know that even for single gene Mendelian disorders, patients with identical mutations often have different presentations and outcomes. This lack of genotype-phenotype correlation led us and others to examine the roles of modifier genes in the context of biological networks. These investigations have utilized vertebrate and invertebrate model organisms. Since one of the goals of research on modifier genes and networks is to identify novel therapeutic targets, the challenges to patient access and compliance because of the high costs of medications for rare genetic diseases must be recognized. A recent article explored protective modifiers, including plastin 3 (PLS3) and coronin 1C (CORO1C), in spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). SMA is an autosomal recessive deficit of survival motor neuron protein (SMN) caused by mutations in SMN1. However, the severity of SMA is determined primarily by the number of SMN2 copies, and this results in significant phenotypic variability. PLS3 was upregulated in siblings who were asymptomatic compared with those who had SMA2 or SMA3, but identical homozygous SMN1 deletions and equal numbers of SMN2 copies. CORO1C was identified by interrogation of the PLS3 interactome. Overexpression of these proteins rescued endocytosis in SMA models. In addition, antisense RNA for upregulation of SMN2 protein expression is being developed as another way of modifying the SMA phenotype. These investigations suggest the practical application of protective modifiers to rescue SMA phenotypes. Other examples of the potential therapeutic value of novel protective modifiers will be discussed, including in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and glycerol kinase deficiency. This work shows that while we live in an exciting era of genomic sequencing, a functional understanding of biology, the impact of its

  6. Viability of long-term gene therapy in the cochlea.

    PubMed

    Atkinson, Patrick J; Wise, Andrew K; Flynn, Brianna O; Nayagam, Bryony A; Richardson, Rachael T

    2014-04-22

    Gene therapy has been investigated as a way to introduce a variety of genes to treat neurological disorders. An important clinical consideration is its long-term effectiveness. This research aims to study the long-term expression and effectiveness of gene therapy in promoting spiral ganglion neuron survival after deafness. Adenoviral vectors modified to express brain derived neurotrophic factor or neurotrophin-3 were unilaterally injected into the guinea pig cochlea one week post ototoxic deafening. After six months, persistence of gene expression and significantly greater neuronal survival in neurotrophin-treated cochleae compared to the contralateral cochleae were observed. The long-term gene expression observed indicates that gene therapy is potentially viable; however the degeneration of the transduced cells as a result of the original ototoxic insult may limit clinical effectiveness. With further research aimed at transducing stable cochlear cells, gene therapy may be an efficacious way to introduce neurotrophins to promote neuronal survival after hearing loss.

  7. Retrotransposons as regulators of gene expression.

    PubMed

    Elbarbary, Reyad A; Lucas, Bronwyn A; Maquat, Lynne E

    2016-02-12

    Transposable elements (TEs) are both a boon and a bane to eukaryotic organisms, depending on where they integrate into the genome and how their sequences function once integrated. We focus on two types of TEs: long interspersed elements (LINEs) and short interspersed elements (SINEs). LINEs and SINEs are retrotransposons; that is, they transpose via an RNA intermediate. We discuss how LINEs and SINEs have expanded in eukaryotic genomes and contribute to genome evolution. An emerging body of evidence indicates that LINEs and SINEs function to regulate gene expression by affecting chromatin structure, gene transcription, pre-mRNA processing, or aspects of mRNA metabolism. We also describe how adenosine-to-inosine editing influences SINE function and how ongoing retrotransposition is countered by the body's defense mechanisms. Copyright © 2016, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  8. Retrotransposons as regulators of gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Elbarbary, Reyad A.; Lucas, Bronwyn A.; Maquat, Lynne E.

    2016-01-01

    Transposable elements (TEs) are both a boon and a bane to eukaryotic organisms, depending on where they integrate into the genome and how their sequences function once integrated. We focus on two types of TEs: long interspersed elements (LINEs) and short interspersed elements (SINEs). LINEs and SINEs are retrotransposons; that is, they transpose via an RNA intermediate. We discuss how LINEs and SINEs have expanded in eukaryotic genomes and contribute to genome evolution. An emerging body of evidence indicates that LINEs and SINEs function to regulate gene expression by affecting chromatin structure, gene transcription, pre-mRNA processing, or aspects of mRNA metabolism. We also describe how adenosine-to-inosine editing influences SINE function and how ongoing retrotransposition is countered by the body’s defense mechanisms. PMID:26912865

  9. Prospects for Gene Therapy in the Fragile X Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rattazzi, Mario C.; LaFauci, Giuseppe; Brown, W. Ted

    2004-01-01

    Gene therapy is unarguably the definitive way to treat, and possibly cure, genetic diseases. A straightforward concept in theory, in practice it has proven difficult to realize, even when directed to easily accessed somatic cell systems. Gene therapy for diseases in which the central nervous system (CNS) is the target organ presents even greater…

  10. Prospects for Gene Therapy in the Fragile X Syndrome

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rattazzi, Mario C.; LaFauci, Giuseppe; Brown, W. Ted

    2004-01-01

    Gene therapy is unarguably the definitive way to treat, and possibly cure, genetic diseases. A straightforward concept in theory, in practice it has proven difficult to realize, even when directed to easily accessed somatic cell systems. Gene therapy for diseases in which the central nervous system (CNS) is the target organ presents even greater…

  11. Development of a Nanotechnology Platform for Prostate Cancer Gene Therapy

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-07-01

    metastatic and characterized to be CAR¯/HER2¯. This means that they are not a good candidate for adenoviral gene therapy or Herceptin anti-HER2...and can potentially be used in the treatment of the patients that do not respond to adenoviral gene therapy or Herceptin immunotherapy.     5

  12. Regulatory considerations for translating gene therapy: a European Union perspective.

    PubMed

    Galli, Maria Cristina

    2009-11-11

    A preclinical study on a gene therapy approach for treatment of the severe muscle weakness associated with a variety of neuromuscular disorders provides a forum to discuss the translational challenges of gene therapy from a regulatory point of view. In this Perspective, the findings are considered from the view of European regulatory requirements for first clinical use.

  13. Gene therapy: a possible future standard for HIV care.

    PubMed

    Abou-El-Enein, Mohamed; Bauer, Gerhard; Reinke, Petra

    2015-07-01

    Despite undeniable accomplishments in developing cell and gene therapeutic strategies to combat HIV infection, key social, economic, and policy-related challenges still need to be overcome for any future commercialization efforts of these novel therapies to be successful. Here, we address these challenges and structure a framework for eradicating HIV/AIDS using gene therapy. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Gene therapy in head and neck cancer: a review

    PubMed Central

    Chisholm, E; Bapat, U; Chisholm, C; Alusi, G; Vassaux, G

    2007-01-01

    Gene therapy for cancer is a rapidly evolving field with head and neck squamous cell cancer being one of the more frequently targeted cancer types. The number of clinical trials in the UK is growing and there is already a commercially available agent in China. Various gene therapy strategies along with delivery mechanisms for targeting head and neck cancer are reviewed. PMID:18057169

  15. Limb development: a paradigm of gene regulation.

    PubMed

    Petit, Florence; Sears, Karen E; Ahituv, Nadav

    2017-04-01

    The limb is a commonly used model system for developmental biology. Given the need for precise control of complex signalling pathways to achieve proper patterning, the limb is also becoming a model system for gene regulation studies. Recent developments in genomic technologies have enabled the genome-wide identification of regulatory elements that control limb development, yielding insights into the determination of limb morphology and forelimb versus hindlimb identity. The modulation of regulatory interactions - for example, through the modification of regulatory sequences or chromatin architecture - can lead to morphological evolution, acquired regeneration capacity or limb malformations in diverse species, including humans.

  16. Dietary Methanol Regulates Human Gene Activity

    PubMed Central

    Komarova, Tatiana V.; Sheshukova, Ekaterina V.; Kosorukov, Vyacheslav S.; Kiryanov, Gleb I.; Dorokhov, Yuri L.

    2014-01-01

    Methanol (MeOH) is considered to be a poison in humans because of the alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH)-mediated conversion of MeOH to formaldehyde (FA), which is toxic. Our recent genome-wide analysis of the mouse brain demonstrated that an increase in endogenous MeOH after ADH inhibition led to a significant increase in the plasma MeOH concentration and a modification of mRNA synthesis. These findings suggest endogenous MeOH involvement in homeostasis regulation by controlling mRNA levels. Here, we demonstrate directly that study volunteers displayed increasing concentrations of MeOH and FA in their blood plasma when consuming citrus pectin, ethanol and red wine. A microarray analysis of white blood cells (WBC) from volunteers after pectin intake showed various responses for 30 significantly differentially regulated mRNAs, most of which were somehow involved in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease (AD). There was also a decreased synthesis of hemoglobin mRNA, HBA and HBB, the presence of which in WBC RNA was not a result of red blood cells contamination because erythrocyte-specific marker genes were not significantly expressed. A qRT-PCR analysis of volunteer WBCs after pectin and red wine intake confirmed the complicated relationship between the plasma MeOH content and the mRNA accumulation of both genes that were previously identified, namely, GAPDH and SNX27, and genes revealed in this study, including MME, SORL1, DDIT4, HBA and HBB. We hypothesized that human plasma MeOH has an impact on the WBC mRNA levels of genes involved in cell signaling. PMID:25033451

  17. Circadian clock gene expression regulates cancer cell growth through glutaminase.

    PubMed

    Huang, Aixia; Bao, Bingbo; Gaskins, H Rex; Liu, Haijun; Zhang, Xueli; Lu, Liwen; Gao, Shan; Shi, Yihai; Zhang, Ming; Shan, Yuanzhou; Feng, Jing; Yao, Guoxiang

    2014-05-01

    Glutamine is an essential amino acid for malignant tumor cells. Glutaminase that metabolizes glutamine reaches a maximum expression in tumors immediately before the maximum proliferation rate. Tumor cells grow at different rates during the day. We postulated that the activity of glutaminase in tumor cells is subject to the regulation of circadian clock gene. We measured glutaminase by western blot analysis and circadian clock gene expression by real-time polymerase chain reaction in the liver and tumor cells at six equispaced time points of the day in individual mice of a 12/12 h light/dark schedule. The results showed that the tumor-bearing mice, under normal diurnal conditions, are circadianly entrained, as reflected by the normal host locomotor activity rhythms and rhythmic liver clock gene expression. The tumors within these mice are also circadianly organized, as reflected by circadian clock gene (Bmal1) expression. What is most remarkable is that kidney-type glutaminase also showed circadian rhythms in the same pattern with tumor circadian clock gene expression in liver cancer xenograft model, indicating that conditionally inhibiting glutaminase activity may provide a new target for cancer therapy.

  18. Social regulation of cortisol receptor gene expression

    PubMed Central

    Korzan, Wayne J.; Grone, Brian P.; Fernald, Russell D.

    2014-01-01

    In many social species, individuals influence the reproductive capacity of conspecifics. In a well-studied African cichlid fish species, Astatotilapia burtoni, males are either dominant (D) and reproductively competent or non-dominant (ND) and reproductively suppressed as evidenced by reduced gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH1) release, regressed gonads, lower levels of androgens and elevated levels of cortisol. Here, we asked whether androgen and cortisol levels might regulate this reproductive suppression. Astatotilapia burtoni has four glucocorticoid receptors (GR1a, GR1b, GR2 and MR), encoded by three genes, and two androgen receptors (ARα and ARβ), encoded by two genes. We previously showed that ARα and ARβ are expressed in GnRH1 neurons in the preoptic area (POA), which regulates reproduction, and that the mRNA levels of these receptors are regulated by social status. Here, we show that GR1, GR2 and MR mRNAs are also expressed in GnRH1 neurons in the POA, revealing potential mechanisms for both androgens and cortisol to influence reproductive capacity. We measured AR, MR and GR mRNA expression levels in a microdissected region of the POA containing GnRH1 neurons, comparing D and ND males. Using quantitative PCR (qPCR), we found D males had higher mRNA levels of ARα, MR, total GR1a and GR2 in the POA compared with ND males. In contrast, ND males had significantly higher levels of GR1b mRNA, a receptor subtype with a reduced transcriptional response to cortisol. Through this novel regulation of receptor type, neurons in the POA of an ND male will be less affected by the higher levels of cortisol typical of low status, suggesting GR receptor type change as a potential adaptive mechanism to mediate high cortisol levels during social suppression. PMID:25013108

  19. Lentiviral hematopoietic stem cell gene therapy in patients with Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome.

    PubMed

    Aiuti, Alessandro; Biasco, Luca; Scaramuzza, Samantha; Ferrua, Francesca; Cicalese, Maria Pia; Baricordi, Cristina; Dionisio, Francesca; Calabria, Andrea; Giannelli, Stefania; Castiello, Maria Carmina; Bosticardo, Marita; Evangelio, Costanza; Assanelli, Andrea; Casiraghi, Miriam; Di Nunzio, Sara; Callegaro, Luciano; Benati, Claudia; Rizzardi, Paolo; Pellin, Danilo; Di Serio, Clelia; Schmidt, Manfred; Von Kalle, Christof; Gardner, Jason; Mehta, Nalini; Neduva, Victor; Dow, David J; Galy, Anne; Miniero, Roberto; Finocchi, Andrea; Metin, Ayse; Banerjee, Pinaki P; Orange, Jordan S; Galimberti, Stefania; Valsecchi, Maria Grazia; Biffi, Alessandra; Montini, Eugenio; Villa, Anna; Ciceri, Fabio; Roncarolo, Maria Grazia; Naldini, Luigi

    2013-08-23

    Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome (WAS) is an inherited immunodeficiency caused by mutations in the gene encoding WASP, a protein regulating the cytoskeleton. Hematopoietic stem/progenitor cell (HSPC) transplants can be curative, but, when matched donors are unavailable, infusion of autologous HSPCs modified ex vivo by gene therapy is an alternative approach. We used a lentiviral vector encoding functional WASP to genetically correct HSPCs from three WAS patients and reinfused the cells after a reduced-intensity conditioning regimen. All three patients showed stable engraftment of WASP-expressing cells and improvements in platelet counts, immune functions, and clinical scores. Vector integration analyses revealed highly polyclonal and multilineage haematopoiesis resulting from the gene-corrected HSPCs. Lentiviral gene therapy did not induce selection of integrations near oncogenes, and no aberrant clonal expansion was observed after 20 to 32 months. Although extended clinical observation is required to establish long-term safety, lentiviral gene therapy represents a promising treatment for WAS.

  20. Somatic gene therapy in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery.

    PubMed

    O'Malley, B W; Ledley, F D

    1993-11-01

    The initial clinical trials of somatic gene therapy have demonstrated that gene transfer can be performed safely in a clinical setting and with public acceptance. These trials have focused attention on the broad applications of this technology in routine medical and surgical practice. This article reviews the reasons why somatic gene therapy could lead to significant improvements in clinical practice as well as specific therapies in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery. Early applications include the treatment of inherited diseases such as cystic fibrosis, new approaches for treating malignancies, new methods for enhancing tissue repair, and regeneration after plastic and reconstructive surgery, and the potential for using the thyroid as a target for somatic gene therapy. The following review will illustrate how somatic gene therapy may have a significant impact not only on the treatment of rare genetic diseases but on managing the common problems encountered by physicians and patients in daily practice.

  1. A snapshot of gene therapy in Latin America

    PubMed Central

    Linden, Rafael; Matte, Ursula

    2014-01-01

    Gene therapy attempts the insertion and expression of exogenous genetic material in cells for therapeutic purposes. Conceived in the 1960s, gene therapy reached its first clinical trial at the end of the 1980s and by December 2013 around 600 genuine open clinical trials of gene therapy were registered at NIH Clinical Trials Database. Here, we summarize the current efforts towards the development of gene therapy in Latin America. Our survey shows that the number of scientists involved in the development of gene therapy and DNA vaccines in Latin America is still very low. Higher levels of investment in this technology are necessary to boost the advancement of innovation and intellectual property in this field in a way that would ease both the social and financial burden of various medical conditions in Latin America. PMID:24764763

  2. A snapshot of gene therapy in Latin America.

    PubMed

    Linden, Rafael; Matte, Ursula

    2014-03-01

    Gene therapy attempts the insertion and expression of exogenous genetic material in cells for therapeutic purposes. Conceived in the 1960s, gene therapy reached its first clinical trial at the end of the 1980s and by December 2013 around 600 genuine open clinical trials of gene therapy were registered at NIH Clinical Trials Database. Here, we summarize the current efforts towards the development of gene therapy in Latin America. Our survey shows that the number of scientists involved in the development of gene therapy and DNA vaccines in Latin America is still very low. Higher levels of investment in this technology are necessary to boost the advancement of innovation and intellectual property in this field in a way that would ease both the social and financial burden of various medical conditions in Latin America.

  3. Cardiac gene therapy: Recent advances and future directions.

    PubMed

    Mason, Daniel; Chen, Yu-Zhe; Krishnan, Harini Venkata; Sant, Shilpa

    2015-10-10

    Gene therapy has the potential to serve as an adaptable platform technology for treating various diseases. Cardiovascular disease is a major cause of mortality in the developed world and genetic modification is steadily becoming a more plausible method to repair and regenerate heart tissue. Recently, new gene targets to treat cardiovascular disease have been identified and developed into therapies that have shown promise in animal models. Some of these therapies have advanced to clinical testing. Despite these recent successes, several barriers must be overcome for gene therapy to become a widely used treatment of cardiovascular diseases. In this review, we evaluate specific genetic targets that can be exploited to treat cardiovascular diseases, list the important delivery barriers for the gene carriers, assess the most promising methods of delivering the genetic information, and discuss the current status of clinical trials involving gene therapies targeted to the heart. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Viral Vectors for Gene Therapy: Current State and Clinical Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Lukashev, A N; Zamyatnin, A A

    2016-07-01

    Gene therapy is the straightforward approach for the application of recent advances in molecular biology into clinical practice. One of the major obstacles in the development of gene therapy is the delivery of the effector to and into the target cell. Unfortunately, most methods commonly used in laboratory practice are poorly suited for clinical use. Viral vectors are one of the most promising methods for gene therapy delivery. Millions of years of evolution of viruses have resulted in the development of various molecular mechanisms for entry into cells, long-term survival within cells, and activation, inhibition, or modification of the host defense mechanisms at all levels. The relatively simple organization of viruses, small genome size, and evolutionary plasticity allow modifying them to create effective instruments for gene therapy approaches. This review summarizes the latest trends in the development of gene therapy, in particular, various aspects and prospects of the development of clinical products based on viral delivery systems.

  5. Gene therapy for cardiovascular disease mediated by ultrasound and microbubbles

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Gene therapy provides an efficient approach for treatment of cardiovascular disease. To realize the therapeutic effect, both efficient delivery to the target cells and sustained expression of transgenes are required. Ultrasound targeted microbubble destruction (UTMD) technique has become a potential strategy for target-specific gene and drug delivery. When gene-loaded microbubble is injected, the ultrasound-mediated microbubble destruction may spew the transported gene to the targeted cells or organ. Meanwhile, high amplitude oscillations of microbubbles increase the permeability of capillary and cell membrane, facilitating uptake of the released gene into tissue and cell. Therefore, efficiency of gene therapy can be significantly improved. To date, UTMD has been successfully investigated in many diseases, and it has achieved outstanding progress in the last two decades. Herein, we discuss the current status of gene therapy of cardiovascular diseases, and reviewed the progress of the delivery of genes to cardiovascular system by UTMD. PMID:23594865

  6. Glaucoma, Stem Cells, and Gene Therapy: Where Are We Now?

    PubMed

    Daliri, Karim; Ljubimov, Alexander V; Hekmatimoghaddam, Seyedhossein

    2017-08-31

    Glaucoma is the second most common cause of blindness, affecting 70~80 million people around the world. The death of retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) is the main cause of blindness related to this disease. Current therapies do not provide enough protection and regeneration of RGCs. A novel opportunity for treatment of glaucoma is application of technologies related to stem cell and gene therapy. In this perspective we will thus focus on emerging approaches to glaucoma treatment including stem cells and gene therapy.

  7. Advances in Gene Therapy for Diseases of the Eye

    PubMed Central

    Petit, Lolita; Khanna, Hemant; Punzo, Claudio

    2016-01-01

    Over the last few years, huge progress has been made with regard to the understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases of the eye. Such knowledge has led to the development of gene therapy approaches to treat these devastating disorders. Challenges regarding the efficacy and efficiency of therapeutic gene delivery have driven the development of novel therapeutic approaches, which continue to evolve the field of ocular gene therapy. In this review article, we will discuss the evolution of preclinical and clinical strategies that have improved gene therapy in the eye, showing that treatment of vision loss has a bright future. PMID:27178388

  8. Human gene therapy: a brief overview of the genetic revolution.

    PubMed

    Misra, Sanjukta

    2013-02-01

    Advances in biotechnology have brought gene therapy to the forefront of medical research. The prelude to successful gene therapy i.e. the efficient transfer and expression of a variety of human gene into target cells has already been accomplished in several systems. Safe methods have been devised to do this, using several viral and no-viral vectors. Two main approaches emerged: in vivo modification and ex vivo modification. Retrovirus, adenovirus, adeno-associated virus are suitable for gene therapeutic approaches which are based on permanent expression of the therapeutic gene. Non-viral vectors are far less efficient than viral vectors, but they have advantages due to their low immunogenicity and their large capacity for therapeutic DNA. To improve the function of non-viral vectors, the addition of viral functions such as receptor mediated uptake and nuclear translocation of DNA may finally lead to the development of an artificial virus. Gene transfer protocols have been approved for human use in inherited diseases, cancers and acquired disorders. In 1990, the first successful clinical trial of gene therapy was initiated for adenosine deaminase deficiency. Since then, the number of clinical protocols initiated worldwide has increased exponentially. Although preliminary results of these trials are somewhat disappointing, but human gene therapy dreams of treating diseases by replacing or supplementing the product of defective or introducing novel therapeutic genes. So definitely human gene therapy is an effective addition to the arsenal of approaches to many human therapies in the 21st century.

  9. Vectors and strategies for nonviral cancer gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Pahle, Jessica; Walther, Wolfgang

    2016-01-01

    This review presents recent developments in the use of nonviral vectors and transfer technologies in cancer gene therapy. Tremendous progress has been made in developing cancer gene therapy in ways that could be applicable to treatments. Numerous efforts are focused on methods of attacking known and novel targets more efficiently and specifically. In parallel to progress in nonviral vector design and delivery technologies, important achievements have been accomplished for suicide, gene replacement, gene suppression and immunostimulatory therapies. New nonviral cancer gene therapies have been developed based on emerging RNAi (si/shRNA-, miRNA) or ODN. This review provides an overview of recent gene therapeutic strategies in which nonviral vectors have been used experimentally and in clinical trials. Furthermore, we present current developments in nonviral vector systems in association with important chemical and physical gene delivery technologies and their potential for the future. Nonviral gene therapy has maintained its position as an approach for treating cancer. This is reflected by the fact that more than 17% of all gene therapy trials employ nonviral approaches. Thus, nonviral vectors have emerged as a clinical alternative to viral vectors for the appropriate expression and delivery of therapeutic genes.

  10. Gene therapy in The Netherlands: highlights from the Low Countries.

    PubMed

    Schenk-Braat, Ellen A M; Kaptein, Leonie C M; Hallemeesch, Marcella M; Bangma, Chris H; Hoeben, Rob C

    2007-10-01

    Gene therapy is an active research area in The Netherlands and Dutch scientists involved in fundamental and clinical gene therapy research significantly contribute to the progresses made in this field. This ranges from the establishment of the 293, 911 and PER.C6 cell lines, which are used worldwide for the production of replication-defective adenoviral vectors, to the development of targeted viral vectors and T lymphocytes as well as of non-viral vectors. Several milestones have been achieved in Dutch clinical gene therapy trials, including the first treatment worldwide of patients with adenosine deaminase deficiency with genetically corrected hematopoietic stem cells in collaboration with French and British scientists. Until now, about 230 patients with various diseases have been treated with viral and non-viral gene therapy in this country. Ongoing and upcoming Dutch clinical trials focus on the translation of new developments in gene therapy research, including the restoration of genetic defects other than SCID, and the use of oncolytic adenoviruses and targeted T cells for the treatment of cancer. The growing commercial interest in Dutch clinical gene therapy is reflected by the involvement of two Dutch companies in ongoing trials as well as the participation of Dutch clinical centres in large phase III international multicenter immuno-gene therapy trials on prostate cancer sponsored by an American company. Translational gene therapy research in The Netherlands is boosted at a governmental level by the Dutch Ministry of Health via a dedicated funding programme. This paper presents an overview on milestones in Dutch basic gene therapy research as well as on past, present and future clinical gene therapy trials in The Netherlands. Copyright 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  11. Mechanically enhanced microcapsules for cellular gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Shen, F; Mazumder, M A J; Burke, N A D; Stöver, H D H; Potter, M A

    2009-07-01

    Microcapsules bearing a covalently cross-linked coating have been developed for cellular gene therapy as an improvement on alginate-poly(L-lysine)-alginate (APA) microcapsules that only have ionic cross-linking. In this study, two mutually reactive polyelectrolytes, a polycation (designated C70), poly([2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl]trimethylammonium chloride-co-2-aminoethyl methacrylate hydrochloride) and a polyanion (designated A70), poly(sodium methacrylate-co-2-(methacryloyloxy)ethyl acetoacetate), were used during the microcapsule fabrication. Ca-alginate beads were sequentially laminated with C70, A70, poly(L-lysine) (PLL), and alginate. The A70 reacts with both C70 and PLL to form a approximately 30 microm thick covalently cross-linked interpenetrating polymer network on the surface of the capsules. Confocal images confirmed the location of the C70/A70/PLL network and the stability of the network after 4 weeks implantation in mice. The mechanical and chemical resistance of the capsules was tested with a "stress test" where microcapsules were gently shaken in 0.003% EDTA for 15 min. APA capsules disappeared during this treatment, whereas the modified capsules, even those that had been retrieved from mice after 4-weeks implantation, remained intact. Analysis of solutions passing through model flat membranes showed that the molecular weight cut-off of alginate-C70-A70-PLL-alginate is similar to that of alginate-PLL-alginate. Recombinant cells encapsulated in APA and modified capsules were able to secrete luciferase into culture media. The modified capsules were found to capture some components of regular culture media used during preparation, causing an immune reaction in implanted mice, but use of UltraCulture serum-free medium was found to prevent this immune reaction. In vivo biocompatibility of the new capsules was similar to the APA capsules, with no sign of clinical toxicity on complete blood counts and liver function tests. The increased stability of the

  12. Genome Editing Gene Therapy for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy.

    PubMed

    Hotta, Akitsu

    2015-09-22

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a severe genetic disorder caused by loss of function of the dystrophin gene on the X chromosome. Gene augmentation of dystrophin is challenging due to the large size of the dystrophin cDNA. Emerging genome editing technologies, such as TALEN and CRISPR-Cas9 systems, open a new erain the restoration of functional dystrophin and are a hallmark of bona fide gene therapy. In this review, we summarize current genome editing approaches, properties of target cell types for ex vivo gene therapy, and perspectives of in vivo gene therapy including genome editing in human zygotes. Although technical challenges, such as efficacy, accuracy, and delivery of the genome editing components, remain to be further improved, yet genome editing technologies offer a new avenue for the gene therapy of DMD.

  13. [Progress on study of achromatopsia and targeted gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Dai, Xu-feng; Pang, Ji-jing

    2012-08-01

    Achromatopsia is an early onset retinal dystrophy that causes severe visual impairment. To date, four genes have been found to be implicated in achromatopsia-associated mutations: guanine nucleotide-binding protein (GNAT2), cyclic nucleotide-gated channel alpha-3 (CNGA3), cyclic nucleotide-gated channel beta-3 (CNGB3) and phosphodiesterase 6C (PDE6C). Even with early onset, the slow progress and the good responses to gene therapy in animal models render achromatopsia a very attractive candidate for human gene therapy after the successful of the Phase I clinical trials of Leber's congenital amaurosis. With the development of molecular genetics and the therapeutic gene replacement technology, the adeno-associated viral (AAV) vector-mediated gene therapy for achromatopsia in the preclinical animal experiments achieved encouraging progress in the past years. This article briefly reviews the recent research achievements of achromatopsia with gene therapy.

  14. Neural stem cell-based gene therapy for brain tumors.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seung U

    2011-03-01

    Advances in gene-based medicine since 1990s have ushered in new therapeutic strategy of gene therapy for inborn error genetic diseases and cancer. Malignant brain tumors such as glioblastoma multiforme and medulloblastoma remain virtually untreatable and lethal. Currently available treatment for brain tumors including radical surgical resection followed by radiation and chemotherapy, have substantially improved the survival rate in patients suffering from these brain tumors; however, it remains incurable in large proportion of patients. Therefore, there is substantial need for effective, low-toxicity therapies for patients with malignant brain tumors, and gene therapy targeting brain tumors should fulfill this requirement. Gene therapy for brain tumors includes many therapeutic strategies and these strategies can be grouped in two major categories: molecular and immunologic. The widely used molecular gene therapy approach is suicide gene therapy based on the conversion of non-toxic prodrugs into active anticancer agents via introduction of enzymes and genetic immunotherapy involves the gene transfer of immune-stimulating cytokines including IL-4, IL-12 and TRAIL. For both molecular and immune gene therapy, neural stem cells (NSCs) can be used as delivery vehicle of therapeutic genes. NSCs possess an inherent tumor tropism that supports their use as a reliable delivery vehicle to target therapeutic gene products to primary brain tumors and metastatic cancers throughout the brain. Significance of the NSC-based gene therapy for brain tumor is that it is possible to exploit the tumor-tropic property of NSCs to mediate effective, tumor-selective therapy for primary and metastatic cancers in the brain and outside, for which no tolerated curative treatments are currently available.

  15. Evaluating Posttranscriptional Regulation of Cytokine Genes

    PubMed Central

    Rattenbacher, Bernd; Bohjanen, Paul R.

    2014-01-01

    A wide variety of cytokines are necessary for cell–cell communication in multicellular organisms, and cytokine dysregulation has detrimental effects, leading to disease states. Thus, it is a necessity that the expression of cytokines is tightly controlled. Regulation of cytokine gene expression takes place at different levels, including transcriptional and posttranscriptional levels. Ultimately, the steady-state levels of cytokine transcripts are determined by the equilibrium of transcription and degradation of this mRNA. Degradation rates of cytokine mRNAs can be measured in cells by blocking transcription with actinomycin D, harvesting RNA after different time points, and evaluating mRNA levels over time by northern blot. Cis-acting elements that mediate the rapid decay of numerous cytokine transcripts, including AU-rich elements (AREs), are found in the 3′ untranslated region (UTR) of these transcripts. Putative regulatory cis-elements can be cloned into the 3′ UTR of a reporter transcript in order to assess their function in regulating mRNA decay. Cis-elements, such as AREs, regulate cytokine mRNA decay by binding to trans-acting proteins, such as tristetraprolin or HuR. These RNA-binding proteins can be visualized using electromobility shift assays or UV crosslinking assays based on their binding to radioactively labeled RNA sequences. RNA-binding proteins that regulate cytokine mRNA decay can be purified using an RNA affinity method, using their target RNA sequence as the bait. In this chapter, we review the methods for measuring cytokine mRNA decay and methods for characterizing the cis-acting elements and trans-acting factors that regulate cytokine mRNA decay. PMID:22131026

  16. Gene therapy for eye as regenerative medicine? Lessons from RPE65 gene therapy for Leber's Congenital Amaurosis.

    PubMed

    Rakoczy, Elizabeth P; Narfström, Kristina

    2014-11-01

    Recombinant virus mediated gene therapy of Leber's Congenital Amaurosis has provided a wide range of data on the utility of gene replacement therapy for recessive diseases. Studies to date demonstrate that gene therapy in the eye is safe and can result in long-term recovery of visual function, but they also highlight that further research is required to identify optimum intervention time-points, target populations and the compatibility of associate therapies. This article is part of a directed issue entitled: Regenerative Medicine: the challenge of translation. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Endogenous Methanol Regulates Mammalian Gene Activity

    PubMed Central

    Komarova, Tatiana V.; Petrunia, Igor V.; Shindyapina, Anastasia V.; Silachev, Denis N.; Sheshukova, Ekaterina V.; Kiryanov, Gleb I.; Dorokhov, Yuri L.

    2014-01-01

    We recently showed that methanol emitted by wounded plants might function as a signaling molecule for plant-to-plant and plant-to-animal communications. In mammals, methanol is considered a poison because the enzyme alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) converts methanol into toxic formaldehyde. However, the detection of methanol in the blood and exhaled air of healthy volunteers suggests that methanol may be a chemical with specific functions rather than a metabolic waste product. Using a genome-wide analysis of the mouse brain, we demonstrated that an increase in blood methanol concentration led to a change in the accumulation of mRNAs from genes primarily involved in detoxification processes and regulation of the alcohol/aldehyde dehydrogenases gene cluster. To test the role of ADH in the maintenance of low methanol concentration in the plasma, we used the specific ADH inhibitor 4-methylpyrazole (4-MP) and showed that intraperitoneal administration of 4-MP resulted in a significant increase in the plasma methanol, ethanol and formaldehyde concentrations. Removal of the intestine significantly decreased the rate of methanol addition to the plasma and suggested that the gut flora may be involved in the endogenous production of methanol. ADH in the liver was identified as the main enzyme for metabolizing methanol because an increase in the methanol and ethanol contents in the liver homogenate was observed after 4-MP administration into the portal vein. Liver mRNA quantification showed changes in the accumulation of mRNAs from genes involved in cell signalling and detoxification processes. We hypothesized that endogenous methanol acts as a regulator of homeostasis by controlling the mRNA synthesis. PMID:24587296

  18. Nitrogen regulation of lignin peroxidase gene transcription.

    PubMed Central

    Li, D; Alic, M; Gold, M H

    1994-01-01

    Western blot (immunoblot) analysis with a polyclonal antibody to lignin peroxidase (LiP) isozyme H8 from the white rot basidiomycete Phanerochaete chrysosporium demonstrates that LiP protein is detectable in the extracellular media of 5- and 6-day-old nitrogen-limited, but not nitrogen-sufficient, cultures. Northern (RNA) blot analysis demonstrates that lip mRNA is detectable from 5- and 6-day old cells grown in nitrogen-limited, but not nitrogen-sufficient, cultures. These results indicate that LiP expression is regulated at the level of gene transcription by nutrient nitrogen. Since lignin degradation by P. chrysosporium is derepressed by nitrogen starvation, it appears that lignin degradation and LiP expression are coordinately regulated in this organism. These results contradict a recent report which concluded that LiP protein expression is not regulated by nutrient nitrogen (C. G. Johnston and S. D. Aust, Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 200:108-112, 1994). Images PMID:7944376

  19. Translational Approaches towards Cancer Gene Therapy: Hurdles and Hopes

    PubMed Central

    Barar, Jaleh; Omidi, Yadollah

    2012-01-01

    Introduction Of the cancer gene therapy approaches, gene silencing, suicide/apoptosis inducing gene therapy, immunogene therapy and targeted gene therapy are deemed to sub-stantially control the biological consequences of genomic changes in cancerous cells. Thus, a large number of clinical trials have been conducted against various malignancies. In this review, we will discuss recent translational progresses of gene and cell therapy of cancer. Methods Essential information on gene therapy of cancer were reviewed and discussed towards their clinical translations. Results Gene transfer has been rigorously studied in vitro and in vivo, in which some of these gene therapy endeavours have been carried on towards translational investigations and clinical applications. About 65% of gene therapy trials are related to cancer therapy. Some of these trials have been combined with cell therapy to produce personalized medicines such as Sipuleucel-T (Provenge®, marketed by Dendreon, USA) for the treatment of asymptomatic/minimally symptomatic metastatic hormone-refractory prostate cancer. Conclusion Translational approach links two diverse boundaries of basic and clinical researches. For successful translation of geno-medicines into clinical applications, it is essential 1) to have the guidelines and standard operating procedures for development and application of the genomedicines specific to clinically relevant biomarker(s); 2) to conduct necessary animal experimental studies to show the “proof of concept” for the proposed genomedicines; 3) to perform an initial clinical investigation; and 4) to initiate extensive clinical trials to address all necessary requirements. In short, translational researches need to be refined to accelerate the geno-medicine development and clinical applications. PMID:23678451

  20. Engineering liposomal nanoparticles for targeted gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Zylberberg, C; Gaskill, K; Pasley, S; Matosevic, S

    2017-08-01

    Recent mechanistic studies have attempted to deepen our understanding of the process by which liposome-mediated delivery of genetic material occurs. Understanding the interactions between lipid nanoparticles and cells is still largely elusive. Liposome-mediated delivery of genetic material faces systemic obstacles alongside entry into the cell, endosomal escape, lysosomal degradation and nuclear uptake. Rational design approaches for targeted delivery have been developed to reduce off-target effects and enhance transfection. These strategies, which have included the modification of lipid nanoparticles with target-specific ligands to enhance intracellular uptake, have shown significant promise at the proof-of-concept stage. Control of physical and chemical specifications of liposome composition, which includes lipid-to-DNA charge, size, presence of ester bonds, chain length and nature of ligand complexation, is integral to the performance of targeted liposomes as genetic delivery agents. Clinical advances are expected to rely on such systems in the therapeutic application of liposome nanoparticle-based gene therapy. Here, we discuss the latest breakthroughs in the development of targeted liposome-based agents for the delivery of genetic material, paying particular attention to new ligand and cationic lipid design as well as recent in vivo advances.

  1. Retroviral Integrations in Gene Therapy Trials

    PubMed Central

    Biasco, Luca; Baricordi, Cristina; Aiuti, Alessandro

    2012-01-01

    γ-Retroviral and lentiviral vectors allow the permanent integration of a therapeutic transgene in target cells and have provided in the last decade a delivery platform for several successful gene therapy (GT) clinical approaches. However, the occurrence of adverse events due to insertional mutagenesis in GT treated patients poses a strong challenge to the scientific community to identify the mechanisms at the basis of vector-driven genotoxicity. Along the last decade, the study of retroviral integration sites became a fundamental tool to monitor vector–host interaction in patients overtime. This review is aimed at critically revising the data derived from insertional profiling, with a particular focus on the evidences collected from GT clinical trials. We discuss the controversies and open issues associated to the interpretation of integration site analysis during patient's follow up, with an update on the latest results derived from the use of high-throughput technologies. Finally, we provide a perspective on the future technical development and on the application of these studies to address broader biological questions, from basic virology to human hematopoiesis. PMID:22252453

  2. Gene Therapy for Leber Hereditary Optic Neuropathy

    PubMed Central

    Feuer, William J.; Schiffman, Joyce C.; Davis, Janet L.; Porciatti, Vittorio; Gonzalez, Phillip; Koilkonda, Rajeshwari D.; Yuan, Huijun; Lalwani, Anil; Lam, Byron L.; Guy, John

    2015-01-01

    Purpose Leber hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) is a disorder characterized by severe and rapidly progressive visual loss when caused by a mutation in the mitochondrial gene encoding NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase subunit 4 (ND4). We have initiated a gene therapy trial to determine the safety and tolerability of escalated doses of an adeno-associated virus vector (AAV) expressing a normal ND4 complementary DNA in patients with a G to A mutation at nucleotide 11778 of the mitochondrial genome. Design In this prospective open-label trial (NCT02161380), the study drug (self-complementary AAV [scAAV]2(Y444,500,730F)-P1ND4v2) was intravitreally injected unilaterally into the eyes of 5 blind participants with G11778A LHON. Four participants with visual loss for more than 12 months were treated. The fifth participant had visual loss for less than 12 months. The first 3 participants were treated at the low dose of vector (5 × 109 vg), and the fourth participant was treated at the medium dose (2.46 × 1010 vg). The fifth participant with visual loss for less than 12 months received the low dose. Treated participants were followed for 90 to 180 days and underwent ocular and systemic safety assessments along with visual structure and function examinations. Participants Five legally blind patients with G11778A LHON. Main Outcome Measures Loss of visual acuity. Results Visual acuity as measured by the Early Treatment Diabetic Retinopathy Study (ETDRS) eye chart remained unchanged from baseline to 3 months in the first 3 participants. For 2 participants with 90-day follow-up, acuity increased from hand movements to 7 letters in 1 and by 15 letters in 1, representing an improvement equivalent to 3 lines. No one lost vision, and no serious adverse events were observed. Minor adverse events included a transient increase of intraocular pressure (IOP), exposure keratitis, subconjunctival hemorrhage, a sore throat, and a transient increase in neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) against

  3. Prospect of gene therapy for cardiomyopathy in hereditary muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Yue, Yongping; Binalsheikh, Ibrahim M.; Leach, Stacey B.; Domeier, Timothy L.; Duan, Dongsheng

    2016-01-01

    Introduction Cardiac involvement is a common feature in muscular dystrophies. It presents as heart failure and/or arrhythmia. Traditionally, dystrophic cardiomyopathy is treated with symptom-relieving medications. Identification of disease-causing genes and investigation on pathogenic mechanisms have opened new opportunities to treat dystrophic cardiomyopathy with gene therapy. Replacing/repairing the mutated gene and/or targeting the pathogenic process/mechanisms using alternative genes may attenuate heart disease in muscular dystrophies. Areas covered Duchenne muscular dystrophy is the most common muscular dystrophy. Duchenne cardiomyopathy has been the primary focus of ongoing dystrophic cardiomyopathy gene therapy studies. Here, we use Duchenne cardiomyopathy gene therapy to showcase recent developments and to outline the path forward. We also discuss gene therapy status for cardiomyopathy associated with limb-girdle and congenital muscular dystrophies, and myotonic dystrophy. Expert opinion Gene therapy for dystrophic cardiomyopathy has taken a slow but steady path forward. Preclinical studies over the last decades have addressed many fundamental questions. Adeno-associated virus-mediated gene therapy has significantly improved the outcomes in rodent models of Duchenne and limb girdle muscular dystrophies. Validation of these encouraging results in large animal models will pave the way to future human trials. PMID:27340611

  4. Gene therapy for muscular dystrophy: current progress and future prospects.

    PubMed

    Trollet, Capucine; Athanasopoulos, Takis; Popplewell, Linda; Malerba, Alberto; Dickson, George

    2009-07-01

    Muscular dystrophies refer to a group of inherited disorders characterized by progressive muscle weakness, wasting and degeneration. So far, there is no effective treatment but new gene-based therapies are currently being developed with particular noted advances in using conventional gene replacement strategies, RNA-based approaches, or cell-based gene therapy with a main focus on Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). DMD is the most common and severe form of muscular dystrophy and current treatments are far from adequate. However, genetic and cell-based therapies, in particular exon skipping induced by antisense strategies, and corrective gene therapy via functionally engineered dystrophin genes hold great promise, with several clinical trials ongoing. Proof-of-concept of exon skipping has been obtained in animal models, and most recently in clinical trials; this approach represents a promising therapy for a subset of patients. In addition, gene-delivery-based strategies exist both for antisense-induced reading frame restoration, and for highly efficient delivery of functional dystrophin mini- and micro-genes to muscle fibres in vivo and muscle stem cells ex-vivo. In particular, AAV-based vectors show efficient systemic gene delivery to skeletal muscle directly in vivo, and lentivirus-based vectors show promise of combining ex vivo gene modification strategies with cell-mediated therapies.

  5. Bacterial Toxins for Oncoleaking Suicidal Cancer Gene Therapy.

    PubMed

    Pahle, Jessica; Walther, Wolfgang

    For suicide gene therapy, initially prodrug-converting enzymes (gene-directed enzyme-producing therapy, GDEPT) were employed to intracellularly metabolize non-toxic prodrugs into toxic compounds, leading to the effective suicidal killing of the transfected tumor cells. In this regard, the suicide gene therapy has demonstrated its potential for efficient tumor eradication. Numerous suicide genes of viral or bacterial origin were isolated, characterized, and extensively tested in vitro and in vivo, demonstrating their therapeutic potential even in clinical trials to treat cancers of different entities. Apart from this, growing efforts are made to generate more targeted and more effective suicide gene systems for cancer gene therapy. In this regard, bacterial toxins are an alternative to the classical GDEPT strategy, which add to the broad spectrum of different suicide approaches. In this context, lytic bacterial toxins, such as streptolysin O (SLO) or the claudin-targeted Clostridium perfringens enterotoxin (CPE) represent attractive new types of suicide oncoleaking genes. They permit as pore-forming proteins rapid and also selective toxicity toward a broad range of cancers. In this chapter, we describe the generation and use of SLO as well as of CPE-based gene therapies for the effective tumor cell eradication as promising, novel suicide gene approach particularly for treatment of therapy refractory tumors.

  6. [Establishment of a novel biotin-inducible eukaryotic gene regulation system].

    PubMed

    Ye, Lingling; Hong, Liu; Li, Shichong; Wang, Qiwei; Lan, Sanchun; Chen, Zhaolie

    2014-08-01

    To establish a gene regulation system compatible with biopharmaceutical industry and gene therapy, we constructed a fusion protein of biotin ligase from Bacillus subtilis (BS-BirA) and the trans-activation domain, and used its expression vector as the regulatory vector. Meanwhile, BS-BirA-specific operators were ligated upstream of attenuated CMV promoter to obtain the response vector. In this way, a novel eukaryotic gene regulation system responsive to biotin was established and named BS-Biotin-On system. BS-Biotin-On system was further investigated with the enhancing green fluorescent protein (EGFP) as the reporter gene. The results showed that our system was superior to the current similar regulation system in its higher induction ratio, and that the expression of interest gene could be tuned in a rapid and efficient manner by changing the biotin concentrations in the cultures, Our results show that the established system may provide a new alternative for the exogenous gene modulation.

  7. Hepatic IFNL4 expression is associated with non-response to interferon-based therapy through the regulation of basal interferon-stimulated gene expression in chronic hepatitis C patients.

    PubMed

    Murakawa, Miyako; Asahina, Yasuhiro; Kawai-Kitahata, Fukiko; Nakagawa, Mina; Nitta, Sayuri; Otani, Satoshi; Nagata, Hiroko; Kaneko, Shun; Asano, Yu; Tsunoda, Tomoyuki; Miyoshi, Masato; Itsui, Yasuhiro; Azuma, Seishin; Kakinuma, Sei; Tanaka, Yasuhito; Iijima, Sayuki; Tsuchiya, Kaoru; Izumi, Namiki; Tohda, Shuji; Watanabe, Mamoru

    2016-12-30

    Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) within or near interferon lambda 4 (IFNL4) gene located upstream of IFNL3 are associated with response to anti-HCV therapy both in interferon (IFN)-based and IFN-free regimens. IFNL4 encodes IFNλ4, a newly discovered type III IFN, and its expression is controlled by rs368234815-TT/ΔG, which is in strong linkage disequilibrium (LD) with other tag SNPs within or near IFNL4 such as rs12979860 and rs8099917. Intrahepatic expression levels of IFN-stimulated genes (ISGs) affect the responsiveness to IFNα and are also associated with IFNL4 genotype. However, IFNL4 expressions and its role in intrinsic antiviral innate immunity remain unclear. This study evaluated the effect of IFNL4 on intrahepatic ISG expression and investigated its relationship with treatment outcomes in liver samples obtained from 49 chronic hepatitis C patients treated with pegylated (PEG)-IFN/ribavirin therapy. IFNL4 mRNA was detected in 11 of 22 patients with IFNL4-unfavorable SNPs but not in patients with favorable genotypes. IFNL4 expression was associated with non-response to PEG-IFN/ribavirin therapy. Intrahepatic expression of antiviral ISGs (ISG15 and MX1) was significantly higher in IFNL4-unfavorable patients with detectable IFNL4 mRNA than in patients with undetectable IFNL4 mRNA, whereas the expression of suppressive ISGs (RNF125, SOCS1, SOCS3, and RNF11) was lower in patients with detectable IFNL4 mRNA. In summary, intrahepatic expression of IFNL4 was associated with increased antiviral ISG expression and decreased suppressive ISG expression at baseline, resulting in poor responsiveness to IFNα-based therapy in HCV infection.

  8. Methioninase cancer gene therapy with selenomethionine as suicide prodrug substrate.

    PubMed

    Miki, K; Xu, M; Gupta, A; Ba, Y; Tan, Y; Al-Refaie, W; Bouvet, M; Makuuchi, M; Moossa, A R; Hoffman, R M

    2001-09-15

    In this study, we report a novel approach to gene-directed enzyme prodrug therapy for cancer. This gene therapy strategy exploits the toxic pro-oxidant property of methylselenol, which is released from selenomethionine (SeMET) by cancer cells with the adenoviral-delivered methionine alpha,gamma-lyase (MET) gene cloned from Pseudomonas putida. In MET-transduced tumor cells, the cytotoxicity of SeMET is increased up to 1000-fold compared with nontransduced cells. A strong bystander effect occurred because of methylselenol release from MET gene-transduced cells and uptake by surrounding tumor cells. Methylselenol damaged the mitochondria via oxidative stress and caused cytochrome c release into the cytosol, thereby activating the caspase cascade and apoptosis. Adenoviral MET-gene/SeMET treatment also inhibited tumor growth in rodents and significantly prolonged their survival. Recombinant adenovirus-encoding MET gene-SeMET treatment thereby offers a new paradigm for cancer gene therapy.

  9. Bio and nanotechnological strategies for tumor-targeted gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Kang, Jeong-Hun; Toita, Riki; Katayama, Yoshiki

    2010-01-01

    Gene therapy is a new medical approach for the treatment of tumors. For safe and efficient gene therapy, therapeutic genes need to be delivered efficiently into the target tumor cells. Development of gene delivery systems to specifically recognize and target tumor cells and to distinguish them from normal cells, especially in the same tissue or organ, is one of the most important issues regarding the present gene delivery methodologies. The enhanced permeability and retention (EPR) effect using the characteristics of angiogenic tumor blood vessels, as well as gene delivery systems recognizing hyperactivated receptors or intracellular signals, is broadly applied to tumor-targeted gene therapy. In addition, bacterial vectors can be a useful means for targeting hypoxic or anoxic regions of a tumor.

  10. Evaluation of ADA gene expression and transduction efficiency in ADA/SCID patients undergoing gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Carlucci, F; Tabucchi, A; Aiuti, A; Rosi, F; Floccari, F; Pagani, R; Marinello, E

    2004-10-01

    A capillary electrophoresis (CE) method was developed for ADA/SCID diagnosis and monitoring of enzyme replacement therapy, as well as for exploring the transfection efficiency for different retroviral vectors in gene therapy.

  11. [Polymeric nanoparticles with therapeutic gene for gene therapy: I. Preparation and in vivo gene transfer study].

    PubMed

    Yang, Jing; Song, Cunxian; Sun, Hongfan; Wu, Li; Tang, Lina; Leng, Xigang; Wang, Pengyan; Xu, Yiyao; Li, Yongjun; Guan, Heng

    2005-06-01

    VEGF nanoparticle (VEGF-NP) was prepared by a multi-emulsification technique using a biodegradable poly-dl-lactic-co-glycolic (PLGA) as matrix material. The nanoparticles were characterized for size, VEGF loading capacity, and in vitro release. VEGF-NP and naked VEGF plasmid were intramuscularly injected into the ischemia site of the rabbit chronic hindlimb ischemia model and the efficiency of VEGF-NP as gene delivery carrier for gene therapy in animal model was evaluated. Gene therapuetic effect was assessed evaluated by RT-PCR, immunohistochemistry and angiography assay. The average size of VEGF-NP was around 300 nm. The encapsulation efficiency of VEGF was above 96%. Loading amount of VEGF in the nanoparticles was about 4%. In vitro, nanoparticles maintained sustained-release of VEGF for two weeks. Two weeks post gene injection the capillary density in VEGF-NP group (81.22 per mm2) was significantly higher than that in control group (29.54 mm2). RT-PCR results showed greatly higher VEGF expression in VEGF-NP group (31.79au * mm) than that in naked VEGF group (9.15 au * mm). As a carrier system for gene therapy in animal model, VEGF-NP is much better than naked DNA plasmid. The results demonstrate great possibility of using NP carrier in human gene therapy.

  12. The roles of traditional Chinese medicine in gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Ling, Chang-quan; Wang, Li-na; Wang, Yuan; Zhang, Yuan-hui; Yin, Zi-fei; Wang, Meng; Ling, Chen

    2014-03-01

    The field of gene therapy has been increasingly studied in the last four decades, and its clinical application has become a reality in the last 15 years. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), an important component of complementary and alternative medicine, has evolved over thousands of years with its own unique system of theories, diagnostics and therapies. TCM is well-known for its various roles in preventing and treating infectious and chronic diseases, and its usage in other modern clinical practice. However, whether TCM can be applied alongside gene therapy is a topic that has not been systematically examined. Here we provide an overview of TCM theories in relation to gene therapy. We believe that TCM theories are congruent with some principles of gene therapy. TCM-derived drugs may also act as gene therapy vehicles, therapeutic genes, synergistic therapeutic treatments, and as co-administrated drugs to reduce side effects. We also discuss in this review some possible approaches to combine TCM and gene therapy.

  13. Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene therapy in the canine model.

    PubMed

    Duan, Dongsheng

    2015-03-01

    Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked lethal muscle disease caused by dystrophin deficiency. Gene therapy has significantly improved the outcome of dystrophin-deficient mice. Yet, clinical translation has not resulted in the expected benefits in human patients. This translational gap is largely because of the insufficient modeling of DMD in mice. Specifically, mice lacking dystrophin show minimum dystrophic symptoms, and they do not respond to the gene therapy vector in the same way as human patients do. Further, the size of a mouse is hundredfolds smaller than a boy, making it impossible to scale-up gene therapy in a mouse model. None of these limitations exist in the canine DMD (cDMD) model. For this reason, cDMD dogs have been considered a highly valuable platform to test experimental DMD gene therapy. Over the last three decades, a variety of gene therapy approaches have been evaluated in cDMD dogs using a number of nonviral and viral vectors. These studies have provided critical insight for the development of an effective gene therapy protocol in human patients. This review discusses the history, current status, and future directions of the DMD gene therapy in the canine model.

  14. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy Gene Therapy in the Canine Model

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an X-linked lethal muscle disease caused by dystrophin deficiency. Gene therapy has significantly improved the outcome of dystrophin-deficient mice. Yet, clinical translation has not resulted in the expected benefits in human patients. This translational gap is largely because of the insufficient modeling of DMD in mice. Specifically, mice lacking dystrophin show minimum dystrophic symptoms, and they do not respond to the gene therapy vector in the same way as human patients do. Further, the size of a mouse is hundredfolds smaller than a boy, making it impossible to scale-up gene therapy in a mouse model. None of these limitations exist in the canine DMD (cDMD) model. For this reason, cDMD dogs have been considered a highly valuable platform to test experimental DMD gene therapy. Over the last three decades, a variety of gene therapy approaches have been evaluated in cDMD dogs using a number of nonviral and viral vectors. These studies have provided critical insight for the development of an effective gene therapy protocol in human patients. This review discusses the history, current status, and future directions of the DMD gene therapy in the canine model. PMID:25710459

  15. Emerging biotechnological strategies for non-viral antiangiogenic gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Liu, Chunxi; Zhang, Na

    2012-12-01

    Angiogenesis has emerged as a promising target of cancer treatment. With the development of biotechnology, major progress has been made in the exploring effective therapies on targeting tumor angiogenesis over the last 20 years. Gene therapy has attracted considerable interest by virtue of the capabilities of expressing sustained levels of therapeutic agents within cells of the patients. However, the major challenge of gene therapy is the efficient delivery of therapeutic gene to the target site. Compared with viral strategies, non-viral strategies were more acceptable by their widely recognized security and lower side effects. This paper reviews the basic biology of angiogenesis, the potential advantages of antiangiogenic gene therapy, the therapeutic genetic drugs developed through biotechnology, as well as the biotechnological strategies that enhancing non-viral gene therapy targeting to tumor angiogenesis in a more controlled manner, with great respect to RNA interference, ligand-directed vascular targeting strategies, vascular endothelial growth factor pathway and tumor associated macrophages targeting. In conclusion, antiangiogenic gene therapy holds great promise in advancing cancer therapy. Developing better non-viral biotechnological platforms will benefit antiangiogenic targeted cancer gene therapeutic methods, support their evaluation in human clinical trials and realize the actual utilization in the near future.

  16. [Ethical guidelines on genetic testing and gene therapy].

    PubMed

    Fukushima, Yoshimitsu

    2005-03-01

    According to the recent and rapid advances in molecular genetics research, genetic testing and gene therapy have a potential of giving unexpected influence to the human beings. To prevent and to solve various ethical, legal and social implementations (ELSI) of genetic testing and gene therapy, several guidelines have been established. In Japan, all researchers and all clinicians have to know and keep the following three guidelines on genetic testing and a guideline on gene therapy: 1) "Guidelines for Researches on Human Genome and Gene (2001)" by the three Ministries (Education, Health and Economy), 2) "Guidelines for Genetic Testing (2001)" by the Genetic--medicine--related 10 societies, 3) "Ethical Principles on Entrusted Genetic Testing (2001)" by the Japan Registered Clinical Laboratories Association, and 4) "Guidelines for Clinical Research on Gene Therapy (2002)" by the two Ministries (Health and Education).

  17. Current status of gene therapy for rheumatoid arthritis.

    PubMed

    Reinecke, J; Koch, H; Meijer, H; Granrath, M; Schulitz, K P; Wehling, P

    1999-02-01

    Despite the high prevalence of the disease, at present little effective pharmacological treatment of rheumatoid arthritis is available. Novel approaches utilising biological agents have resulted in the development of new antiarthritic and antiinflammatory agents, such as tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha)-specific antibodies and interleukin-1 receptor antagonist (IL-1ra). Local gene therapy not only allows the pharmaceutical use of these biologicals, but also allows for continuous drug supply, which is necessary for chronic diseases like rheumatoid arthritis. We discuss the basics of rheumatoid arthritis therapy, candidate genes and possible gene transfer methods. A current clinical gene therapy trial is focusing on the IL-1 system using IL-1ra as a transgene. The transfer system, clinical protocol and preliminary results are described. After treatment of 11 patients we feel that gene therapy will offer potential as a new avenue to treat rheumatoid arthritis.

  18. Gene therapy for heart failure: where do we stand?

    PubMed

    Naim, Charbel; Yerevanian, Armen; Hajjar, Roger J

    2013-02-01

    Advances in understanding of the molecular basis of myocardial dysfunction, together with the development of increasingly efficient gene transfer technology, has placed heart failure within reach of gene-based therapy. Multiple components of cardiac contractility, including the Beta-adrenergic system, the calcium channel cycling pathway, and cytokine mediated cell proliferation, have been identified as appropriate targets for gene therapy. The development of efficient and safe vectors such as adeno-associated viruses and polymer nanoparticles has provided an opportunity for clinical application for gene therapy. The recent successful and safe completion of a phase 2 trial targeting the sarcoplasmic reticulum calcium ATPase pump (SERCA2a) has the potential to open a new era for gene therapy in the treatment of heart failure.

  19. Gene Therapy, Early Promises, Subsequent Problems, and Recent Breakthroughs

    PubMed Central

    Razi Soofiyani, Saeideh; Baradaran, Behzad; Lotfipour, Farzaneh; Kazemi, Tohid; Mohammadnejad, Leila

    2013-01-01

    Gene therapy is one of the most attractive fields in medicine. The concept of gene delivery to tissues for clinical applications has been discussed around half a century, but scientist’s ability to manipulate genetic material via recombinant DNA technology made this purpose to reality. Various approaches, such as viral and non-viral vectors and physical methods, have been developed to make gene delivery safer and more efficient. While gene therapy initially conceived as a way to treat life-threatening disorders (inborn errors, cancers) refractory to conventional treatment, to date gene therapy is considered for many non–life-threatening conditions including those adversely influence on a patient’s quality of life. Gene therapy has made significant progress, including tangible success, although much slower than was initially predicted. Although, gene therapies still at a fairly primitive stage, it is firmly science based. There is justifiable hope that with enhanced pathobiological understanding and biotechnological improvements, gene therapy will be a standard part of clinical practice within 20 years. PMID:24312844

  20. Identification of Hematopoietic Stem Cell Engraftment Genes in Gene Therapy Studies.

    PubMed

    Powers, John M; Trobridge, Grant D

    2013-09-01

    Hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) therapy using replication-incompetent retroviral vectors is a promising approach to provide life-long correction for genetic defects. HSC gene therapy clinical studies have resulted in functional cures for several diseases, but in some studies clonal expansion or leukemia has occurred. This is due to the dyregulation of endogenous host gene expression from vector provirus insertional mutagenesis. Insertional mutagenesis screens using replicating retroviruses have been used extensively to identify genes that influence oncogenesis. However, retroviral mutagenesis screens can also be used to determine the role of genes in biological processes such as stem cell engraftment. The aim of this review is to describe the potential for vector insertion site data from gene therapy studies to provide novel insights into mechanisms of HSC engraftment. In HSC gene therapy studies dysregulation of host genes by replication-incompetent vector proviruses may lead to enrichment of repopulating clones with vector integrants near genes that influence engraftment. Thus, data from HSC gene therapy studies can be used to identify novel candidate engraftment genes. As HSC gene therapy use continues to expand, the vector insertion site data collected will be of great interest to help identify novel engraftment genes and may ultimately lead to new therapies to improve engraftment.

  1. Large animal models of neurological disorders for gene therapy.

    PubMed

    Gagliardi, Christine; Bunnell, Bruce A

    2009-01-01

    he development of therapeutic interventions for genetic disorders and diseases that affect the central nervous system (CNS) has proven challenging. There has been significant progress in the development of gene therapy strategies in murine models of human disease, but gene therapy outcomes in these models do not always translate to the human setting. Therefore, large animal models are crucial to the development of diagnostics, treatments, and eventual cures for debilitating neurological disorders. This review focuses on the description of large animal models of neurological diseases such as lysosomal storage diseases, Parkinsons disease, Huntingtons disease, and neuroAIDS. The review also describes the contributions of these models to progress in gene therapy research.

  2. Does human gene therapy raise new ethical questions?

    PubMed

    Tauer, C A

    1990-01-01

    Consideration of the ethics of human gene therapy does not seem to raise questions that have never been asked before. However, particularly when gene therapy is extended to modification of the germ cells, several ethical issues take on an added importance or significance. These issues are: (i) possible moral limitations on tampering with "human nature"; (ii) the extent of our responsibility to future generations; (iii) the appropriate use of early human embryos in genetic research. Furthermore, standard norms in clinical and research ethics require careful application to trials of human gene therapy, even if only somatic rather than germ-line improvements are sought.

  3. Communicating in context: a priority for gene therapy researchers.

    PubMed

    Robillard, Julie M

    2015-03-01

    History shows that public opinion of emerging biotechnologies has the potential to impact the research process through mechanisms such as funding and advocacy. It is critical, therefore, to consider public attitudes towards modern biotechnology such as gene therapy and more specifically towards the ethics of gene therapy, alongside advances in basic and clinical research. Research conducted through social media recently assessed how online users view the ethics of gene therapy and showed that while acceptability is high, significant ethical concerns remain. To address these concerns, the development of effective and evidence-based communication strategies that engage a wide range of stakeholders should be a priority for researchers.

  4. A guide to approaching regulatory considerations for lentiviral-mediated gene therapies.

    PubMed

    White, Michael; Whittaker, Roger; Stoll, Elizabeth Ann

    2017-06-12

    Lentiviral vectors are increasingly the gene transfer tool of choice for gene or cell therapies, with multiple clinical investigations showing promise for this viral vector in terms of both safety and efficacy. The third-generation vector system is well-characterized, effectively delivers genetic material and maintains long-term stable expression in target cells, delivers larger amounts of genetic material than other methods, is non-pathogenic and does not cause an inflammatory response in the recipient. This report aims to help academic scientists and regulatory managers negotiate the governance framework to achieve successful translation of a lentiviral vector-based gene therapy. The focus is on European regulations, and how they are administered in the United Kingdom, although many of the principles will be similar for other regions including the United States. The report justifies the rationale for using third-generation lentiviral vectors to achieve gene delivery for in vivo and ex vivo applications; briefly summarises the extant regulatory guidance for gene therapies, categorised as advanced therapeutic medicinal products (ATMPs); provides guidance on specific regulatory issues regarding gene therapies; presents an overview of the key stakeholders to be approached when pursuing clinical trials authorization for an ATMP; and includes a brief catalogue of the documentation required to submit an application for regulatory approval of a new gene therapy.

  5. A Guide to Approaching Regulatory Considerations for Lentiviral-Mediated Gene Therapies.

    PubMed

    White, Michael; Whittaker, Roger; Gándara, Carolina; Stoll, Elizabeth A

    2017-08-01

    Lentiviral vectors are increasingly the gene transfer tool of choice for gene or cell therapies, with multiple clinical investigations showing promise for this viral vector in terms of both safety and efficacy. The third-generation vector system is well characterized, effectively delivers genetic material and maintains long-term stable expression in target cells, delivers larger amounts of genetic material than other methods, is nonpathogenic, and does not cause an inflammatory response in the recipient. This report aims to help academic scientists and regulatory managers negotiate the governance framework to achieve successful translation of a lentiviral vector-based gene therapy. The focus is on European regulations and how they are administered in the United Kingdom, although many of the principles will be similar for other regions, including the United States. The report justifies the rationale for using third-generation lentiviral vectors to achieve gene delivery for in vivo and ex vivo applications; briefly summarizes the extant regulatory guidance for gene therapies, categorized as advanced therapeutic medicinal products (ATMPs); provides guidance on specific regulatory issues regarding gene therapies; presents an overview of the key stakeholders to be approached when pursuing clinical trials authorization for an ATMP; and includes a brief catalogue of the documentation required to submit an application for regulatory approval of a new gene therapy.

  6. A Guide to Approaching Regulatory Considerations for Lentiviral-Mediated Gene Therapies

    PubMed Central

    White, Michael; Whittaker, Roger; Gándara, Carolina; Stoll, Elizabeth A.

    2017-01-01

    Lentiviral vectors are increasingly the gene transfer tool of choice for gene or cell therapies, with multiple clinical investigations showing promise for this viral vector in terms of both safety and efficacy. The third-generation vector system is well characterized, effectively delivers genetic material and maintains long-term stable expression in target cells, delivers larger amounts of genetic material than other methods, is nonpathogenic, and does not cause an inflammatory response in the recipient. This report aims to help academic scientists and regulatory managers negotiate the governance framework to achieve successful translation of a lentiviral vector-based gene therapy. The focus is on European regulations and how they are administered in the United Kingdom, although many of the principles will be similar for other regions, including the United States. The report justifies the rationale for using third-generation lentiviral vectors to achieve gene delivery for in vivo and ex vivo applications; briefly summarizes the extant regulatory guidance for gene therapies, categorized as advanced therapeutic medicinal products (ATMPs); provides guidance on specific regulatory issues regarding gene therapies; presents an overview of the key stakeholders to be approached when pursuing clinical trials authorization for an ATMP; and includes a brief catalogue of the documentation required to submit an application for regulatory approval of a new gene therapy. PMID:28817344

  7. Novel AIDS therapies based on gene editing.

    PubMed

    Khalili, Kamel; White, Martyn K; Jacobson, Jeffrey M

    2017-02-16

    HIV/AIDS remains a major public health issue. In 2014, it was estimated that 36.9 million people are living with HIV worldwide, including 2.6 million children. Since the advent of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART), in the 1990s, treatment has been so successful that in many parts of the world, HIV has become a chronic condition in which progression to AIDS has become increasingly rare. However, while people with HIV can expect to live a normal life span with cART, lifelong medication is required and cardiovascular, renal, liver, and neurologic diseases are still possible, which continues to prompt research for a cure for HIV. Infected reservoir cells, such as CD4+ T cells and myeloid cells, allow persistence of HIV as an integrated DNA provirus and serve as a potential source for the re-emergence of virus. Attempts to eradicate HIV from these cells have focused mainly on the so-called "shock and kill" approach, where cellular reactivation is induced so as to trigger the purging of virus-producing cells by cytolysis or immune attack. This approach has several limitations and its usefulness in clinical applications remains to be assessed. Recent advances in gene-editing technology have allowed the use of this approach for inactivating integrated proviral DNA in the genome of latently infected cells or knocking out HIV receptors. Here, we review this strategy and its potential to eliminate the latent HIV reservoir resulting in a sterile cure of AIDS.

  8. Keratin disorders: from gene to therapy.

    PubMed

    McLean, W H Irwin; Moore, C B Tara

    2011-10-15

    The term 'keratin' is generally accepted to refer to the epithelial keratins of soft and hard epithelial tissues such as: skin, cornea, hair and nail. Since their initial characterization, the total number of mammalian keratins has increased to 54, including 28 type I and 26 type II keratins. Inherited defects that weaken the keratin load-bearing cytoskeleton produce phenotypes characterized by fragility of specific subsets of epithelial tissues. The vast majority of mutations are either missense or small in-frame in-del mutations and disease severity often relates to the position of the mutation in relation to the rod domain. The most complex epithelial structure in humans, the hair follicle, contains trichocyte ('hard') keratin filaments and approximately half of the 54 functional human keratin genes are trichocyte keratins. So far, only four of these have been linked to human genetic disorders: monilethrix, hair-nail ectodermal dysplasia, pseudofolliculitis barbae and woolly hair, while the majority of the hair keratins remain unlinked to human phenotypes. Keratin disorders are a classical group of dominant-negative genetic disorders, representing a large healthcare burden, especially within dermatology. Recent advances in RNA interference therapeutics, particularly in the form of small-interfering RNAs, represent a potential therapy route for keratin disorders through selectively silencing the mutant allele. To date, mutant-specific siRNAs for epidermolysis bullosa simplex, pachyonychia congenita and Messmann epithelial corneal dystrophy-causing missense mutations have been developed and proven to have unprecedented specificity and potency. This could herald the dawn of