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Mol Ther. 2001 Jun;3(6):842-9.

Regulation of angiogenesis and matrix remodeling by localized, matrix-mediated antisense gene delivery.

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington 98195, USA.


Implantation of biomaterials, such as glucose sensors, leads to the formation of a poorly vascularized collagenous capsule that can lead to implant failure. This process, known as the foreign body reaction (FBR), develops in response to almost all biomaterials and consists of overlapping phases similar to those in wound healing. Implantation of porous biomaterials, such as polyvinyl alcohol sponges, also leads to granuloma formation within the interstices of the sponge prior to encapsulation by the FBR. We asked whether delivery of an antisense cDNA for the potent angiogenesis inhibitor thrombospondin (TSP) 2 would enhance blood vessel formation and alter collagen fibrillogenesis in the sponge granuloma and capsule. Collagen solutions were mixed with plasmid to generate gene-activated matrices (GAMs) and applied to biomaterials that were then implanted subcutaneously. Sustained expression of plasmid-encoded proteins was observed at 2 weeks and a month following implantation. In vivo delivery of plasmids, encoding either sense or antisense TSP2 cDNA, altered blood vessel formation and collagen deposition in TSP2-null and wild-type mice, respectively. Untreated implants, implanted next to GAM-treated implants, did not show exogenous gene expression and did not elicit altered responses, suggesting that gene delivery was limited to implant sites. This method of antisense DNA delivery has the potential to improve the performance and life span of implantable delivery devices and biosensors.

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