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Hum Gene Ther

Delivery of recombinant gene product to canines with nonautologous microencapsulated cells.

Peirone MA. Delaney K. Kwiecin J. Fletch A. Chang PL.
Department of Biology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
An alternative and potentially cost-effective approach to somatic gene therapy is to engineer a universal cell line secreting the desired product suitable for implantation into different patients without immune rejection. Encapsulating these cells in immunoprotective alginate microcapsules showed that this approach was effective in treating murine models of human diseases. We now report that this approach is also effective in delivering recombinant gene products to large animals. Canine MDCK cells encapsulated in alginate microcapsules were able to deliver recombinant human growth hormone to nonautologous dogs in vivo. However, the same microcapsules capable of prolonged delivery in mice soon disappeared after implantation in dogs. In contrast, when these microcapsules were modified by using a higher concentration of alginate cross-linked with barium instead of calcium, and by fabricating the alginate as a gelled bead without solubilizing the core, more prolonged and higher levels of recombinant product were obtained. Laminating the surface of the beads with poly-L-lysine and alginate provided an even more mechanically stable device that lasted for >2 months instead of 20 ng of human growth hormone/ml of plasma within the first week. The apparent disappearance of the growth hormone from the circulation after day 14 was due to rapid clearance by anti-human growth hormone antibodies and not due to loss of cell viability. However, all microcapsules provoked an inflammatory reaction, causing mild omentitis, and eventually disappeared from the intraperitoneal cavity. In conclusion, systemic delivery of recombinant gene products with nonautologous cells protected in alginate microcapsules has been shown to be feasible in canine recipients. While improved level and duration of delivery have been achieved by increasing the mechanical stability of the microcapsules, further improvements in biocompatibility and stability will be required for human application.

Targeting strategy for gene delivery to carcinoembryonic antigen-producing cancer cells by retrovirus displaying a single-chain variable fragment antibody.

Konishi H. Ochiya T. Chester KA. Begent RH. Muto T. Sugimura T. Terada M. Begent RH.
First Department of Surgery, National Cancer Center Research Institute, University of Tokyo, Japan.
Cancer-specific antigens are promising targets for the specific delivery of certain drugs or genes to cancer cells in cancer therapy. Carcinoembryonic antigen (CEA) is one of the cancer-associated antigens predominantly detected in the gastrointestinal cancer of the colon and stomach. Targeting strategies for CEA-producing cancer cells have been thoroughly developed mainly by the production of monoclonal antibodies to CEA and further single-chain variable fragment (scFv) antibodies. Here, we have generated Moloney murine leukemia virus-derived retroviral vectors co-displaying an anti-CEA scFv-envelope chimeric protein and an unmodified envelope protein to deliver a gene for herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (HSV-tk) or Escherichia coli beta-galactosidase. The harvested viruses successfully incorporated the chimeric envelope protein as well as the unmodified envelope into the viral particles, and specifically bound to and infected human CEA-producing cancer cells via recognition of CEA, depending on the CEA-producing phenotype of the target cells. These results may have significant implications for the use of scFv directed against tumor-specific antigens for targeting specific antigen-producing cancer cells, a potential step toward in vivo cancer therapy.

A double-blind, placebo controlled, dose ranging study to evaluate the safety and biological efficacy of the lipid-DNA complex GR213487B in the nasal epithelium of adult patients with cystic fibrosis.

Knowles MR. Noone PG. Hohneker K. Johnson LG. Boucher RC. Efthimiou J. Crawford C. Brown R. Schwartzbach C. Pearlman R.
Cystic Fibrosis Centre, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 27599, USA.
GTAB1001: A Double-Blind, Placebo Controlled, Dose Ranging Study to Evaluate the Safety and Biological Efficacy of the Lipid-DNA Complex GR213487B in the Nasal Epithelium of Adult Patients with Cystic Fibrosis. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the effectiveness of various dosages of the lipid-DNA complex GR213487B (0.4375mg and either 4.0mg or 0.0625mg) for producing CFTR gene transfer and correcting the chloride ion transport defect in the nasal epithelium of patients with cystic fibrosis. To assess the safety and tolerability of the lipid-DNA complex GR213487B when applied to the nasal epithelium of patients with cystic fibrosis. DESIGN: Single-center, double-blind, placebo controlled, dose ranging study. DURATION: Pre-treatment evaluations will be performed during two outpatient study visits (ie. between Day -7 to -3 and at Day -2). Patients will be admitted to the Clinical Research Unit (CRU) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Day -1 for additional pre-treatment evaluations performed the day prior to administration of double-blind treatment (ie. gene transfer) on Treatment Day 0. Patients will remain in the CRU for 7 days (Day -1 to Day 6) and will be discharged on Day 6. Patients will subsequently be followed on an outpatient basis but will return for another assessment between Days 9-11, and may also return to the CRU for two optional study visits on Days 14 and 21. All patients will return to the CRU on an out-patient basis for follow-up evaluations on Day 28 +/- 3. SETTING: Patients will receive in-patient treatment in the CRU at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and will remain in the CRU for 7 days. PATIENTS: A target enrollment of 12 evaluable patients is planned. STUDY TREATMENTS: Patients who meet all entry criteria will complete pre-treatment assessments, which will take place between Day -7 to Day -1, and will serve as a baseline for specific evaluations and to ensure clinical stability. Patients will return on Day -1 for admission to the CRU the day prior to gene transfer. Each nostril of the patients will be randomly assigned in a double blind manner to receive either GR213487B liquid nasal spray or the lipid alone (ie. control administered as liposome), by topical application directed at the inferior turbinate. The first four patients will receive an initial dosage of GR213487B containing 0.4375 mg of DNA. The decision to proceed to administer a higher dose (ie. 4.0mg DNA) or a lower dose (ie. 0.0625mg DNA) in the subsequent eight patients will be determined by the Principal Investigator in association with an FDA officer serving as an independent Clinical Ombudsman, according to the study plan (see Section 5.5 and Appendix 3-Dosing Flow Chart). MEASUREMENTS: Efficacy Evaluations The primary variables to determine the efficacy of transgene expression will be: * Evidence of vector derived CFTR (cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator) mRNA, as measured by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) in nasal epithelial cells obtained from nasal scrapes on Day 3 and, nasal biopsies on Day 5, if sufficient tissue is available. * Correction of chloride ion transport across the nasal epithelium as measured by the transepithelial electrical potential difference (TEPD). The baseline TEPD will initially be measured, and again subsequently following perfusion of: --zero chloride perfusion containing amiloride (to induce chloride secretion) --zero chloride perfusion containing amiloride and isoproterenol (to increase cAMP-mediated chloride secretion) Secondary measures to determine the efficacy of gene transfer will be: * Evidence of delivery of plasmid DNA in the nasal lavage (Day 1-5, Day 9-11 and Day 28) * Evidence of vector derived CFTR mRNA from nasal scrapes performed after the nasal biopsy (ie. Day 9-11 and/or Day 28) * Percentage of cells from nasal biopsies expressing vector derived CFTR mRNA as measured by in situ hybridization * Evidence of vector derived CFTR

Vector-specific complementation profiles of two independent primary defects in cystic fibrosis airways.

Year 1998
Zhang Y. Jiang Q. Dudus L. Yankaskas JR. Engelhardt JF.
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Iowa Medical Center, Iowa City 52242, USA.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) lung disease has been linked to multiple primary defects in airway epithelia caused by a dysfunctional cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) gene. These defects include altered Cl- and Na+ permeability as well as intracellular defects in glycoprotein processing. This apparent diversity in CFTR function is reflected in the complex patterning of CFTR expression in airway epithelia. Such complexities present challenges in the design of CF gene therapies that are capable of reconstituting the endogenous patterns of CFTR gene expression in appropriate target cells. Using a human bronchial xenograft model of the CF airway, we have evaluated the efficacy of recombinant adenoviral and cationic liposome-mediated gene transfer to correct Cl- permeability and mucous sulfation defects found in CF lung disease. Results from these studies demonstrated a clear vector-specific complementation profile for these two defects that was dependent on the type of cell transduced and the level of transgene expression. Single-dose administration of recombinant adenovirus effectively transduced high levels of CFTR transgene expression in 11 +/- 1% of epithelial cells and was capable of correcting cAMP-induced changes in Cl- permeability to 91 +/- 14% that seen in non-CF airways. However, this level of transgene expression was incapable of reversing defects in mucous sulfation due to the lack of efficient targeting to goblet cells. In contrast, cationic liposome-mediated delivery of CFTR encoding plasmids to CF airways achieved extremely low levels of transgene expression with insignificant correction (7.4 +/- 2.4%) of cAMP-induced Cl- permeability. This low level of transgene expression, however, efficiently reduced mucous sulfation to levels seen in non-CF airways. Differences in the complementation profiles of these two vectors in correcting Cl- permeability and mucous sulfation defects mirror the ability of recombinant adenovirus and liposomes to reconstitute only certain features of the endogenous distribution and abundance of CFTR protein expression. Such findings suggest that the level of intracellular CFTR required to facilitate proper glycoprotein processing may be much lower than that needed to mediate bulk Cl- flow across the airway epithelium. In summary, these data present the first example by which two different vector systems can efficiently complement independent primary defects associated with a single dysfunctional gene.

Intercellular communication mediates the bystander effect during herpes simplex thymidine kinase/ganciclovir-based gene therapy of human gastrointestinal tumor cells.

Year 1998
Yang L. Chiang Y. Lenz HJ. Danenberg KD. Spears CP. Gordon EM. Anderson WF. Parekh D.
Gene Therapy Laboratories, University of Southern California School of Medicine, Los Angeles 90033, USA.
A bystander effect is described when nontransduced or genetically unmodified cells are killed during death of genetically modified tumor cells transduced with a suicide gene. The "bystander effect" greatly enhances the efficacy of the herpes simplex virus-thymidine kinase/ganciclovir (HSV-TK/GCV) gene therapy approach for cancer. The mechanism of the bystander effect is controversial. In this study, we examined the role of intercellular gap junction communication (GJIC) for the bystander effect in human gastrointestinal tumor cells. Our results show that the extent of the bystander effect varied amongst the tumor cell lines; pancreatic cancer cells BXPC-3 exhibited excellent bystander effects in vitro and in vivo studies whereas other gastrointestinal tumor cell lines such as pancreatic cancer cells MIAPACA-2, and colon cancer cells HT-29 showed poor bystander effects. Bystander effects were only found in the presence of cell-to-cell contact. The extent of the bystander effect was independent of the level of HSV-TK activity in the transduced tumor cells and was correlated with GJIC as demonstrated by an in vitro dye-transfer assay. Expression of the mRNA levels of gap junction protein connexin 43 was 8- to 26-fold or greater and connexin 26 gene expression was 2- to 229-fold greater in BXPC-3 cells compared to HT-29, MIAPACA-2, and PANC3 cells. Our results suggest that intercellular communication is essential for the bystander effect. The correlation between GJIC and the extent of the bystander effect suggest a role for GJIC in mediating the bystander effect. Analysis of tumors for GJIC or expression of gap junction proteins may identify the subset of patients suitable for gene therapy with the HSV-TK/GCV approach.

Differential ganciclovir-mediated cytotoxicity and bystander killing in human colon carcinoma cell lines expressing herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase.

Year 1998
Boucher PD. Ruch RJ. Shewach DS.
Department of Pharmacology, University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor 48109, USA.
The two human colon carcinoma cell lines HT-29 and SW620, which stably express herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase (HSV-TK), are sensitized to the cytotoxic effects of the antiviral drug ganciclovir (GCV). Compared with HT-29 cells, SW620 cells were more sensitive to lower GCV concentrations (

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