Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Neurosci. 2010 Jan 6;30(1):126-30. doi: 10.1523/JNEUROSCI.4489-09.2010.

Trans-splicing-mediated improvement in a severe mouse model of spinal muscular atrophy.

Author information

  • 1Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, Bond Life Sciences Center, University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri 65211, USA.


Spinal muscular atrophy is a leading genetic cause of infantile death and occurs in approximately 1/6000 live births. SMA is caused by the loss of Survival Motor Neuron-1 (SMN1), however, all patients retain at least one copy of a nearly identical gene called SMN2. While SMN2 and SMN1 are comprised of identical coding sequences, the majority of SMN2 transcripts are alternatively spliced, encoding a truncated protein that is unstable and nonfunctional. Considerable effort has focused upon modulating the SMN2 alternative splicing event since this would produce more wild-type protein. Recently we reported the development of an optimized trans-splicing system that involved the coexpression of a SMN2 trans-splicing RNA and an antisense RNA that blocks a downstream splice site in SMN2 pre-mRNA. Here, we demonstrate that in vivo delivery of the optimized trans-splicing vector increases an important SMN-dependent activity, snRNP assembly, in disease-relevant tissue in the SMA mouse model. A single injection of the vector into the intracerebral-ventricular space in SMA neonates also lessens the severity of the SMA phenotype in a severe SMA mouse model, extending survival approximately 70%. Collectively, these results provide the first in vivo demonstration that SMN2 trans-splicing leads to a lessening of the severity of the SMA phenotype and provide evidence for the power of this strategy for reprogramming genetic diseases at the pre-mRNA level.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk