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Exp Hematol. 1994 Feb;22(2):223-30.

Correction of the enzyme deficiency in hematopoietic cells of Gaucher patients using a clinically acceptable retroviral supernatant transduction protocol.

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  • 1Molecular and Medical Genetics Section, NINDS, Bethesda, MD 20892.


Gaucher disease is a lysosomal storage disorder caused by a deficiency of the enzyme glucocerebrosidase (GC), and is an excellent candidate for gene replacement therapy. To develop a clinically acceptable protocol for this purpose, we created two amplified (A) high-titer retroviral vector-producer cell lines to efficiently transduce hematopoietic stem and progenitor cells. GP+envAm12/A-LGSN (A-LGSN), contained the GC cDNA driven by the retroviral long terminal repeat (LTR) and the neomycin phosphotransferase gene expressed from the simian virus 40 early promoter. GP+envAm12/A-LG4 (A-LG4) contained only the GC gene driven by the LTR. Both A-LGSN and A-LG4 contained multiple proviral copies and gave approximately 10-fold higher titers on 3T3 cells compared to their unamplified counterparts. These vectors were packaged in GP+envAm12 cells because vectors produced in this cell line transduced hematopoietic cells more efficiently than other packaging cells tested. Bone marrow mononuclear cells and purified CD34+ cells were infected with virus supernatants four times in the presence of interleukin-3 (IL-3), IL-6, and stem cell factor (SCF) over 96 hours in culture. Cells were then plated in semisolid cultures and colony-forming unit-granulocyte/macrophage (CFU-GM) colonies were scored for vector presence by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Transduction efficiency of CFU-GM colonies derived from CD34+ cells was improved considerably using the amplified vectors in the GP+envAm12 packaging line. For A-LGSN, A-LG4, and unamplified LGSN, transduction efficiencies were 41, 42, and 25%, respectively. Therefore, multiple proviral copies resulting in higher titer improves retroviral transduction of human hematopoietic progenitor cells. Hematopoietic cells from Gaucher patients were transduced and placed into long-term bone marrow culture (LTBMC). Viral supernatant from the amplified producer lines transduced long-term culture initiating cells (LTCIC) efficiently (30 to 50%) using this clinically acceptable protocol. Both sustained mRNA expression and GC enzyme production are achieved in the long-term culture of LTCIC and lead to correction of the GC deficiency in their progeny cells.

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