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J Virol. 2001 Dec;75(24):12382-92.

Widespread gene delivery and structure-specific patterns of expression in the brain after intraventricular injections of neonatal mice with an adeno-associated virus vector.

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Department of Pathobiology and Center for Comparative Medical Genetics, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, and Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Developing a system for widespread somatic gene transfer in the central nervous system (CNS) would be beneficial for understanding the global influence of exogenous genes on animal models. We injected an adeno-associated virus serotype 2 (AAV2) vector into the cerebral lateral ventricles at birth and mapped its distribution and transduction pattern from a promoter capable of expression in multiple targets. The injections resulted in structure-specific patterns of expression that were maintained for at least 1 year in most regions, with efficient targeting of some of the major principal neuron layers. The patterns of transduction were explained by circulation of the viral vector in the subarachnoid space via CSF flow, followed by transduction of underlying structures, rather than by progenitor cell infection and subsequent migration. This study demonstrates that gene transfer throughout the CNS can be achieved without germ line transmission and establishes an experimental strategy for introducing genes to somatic cells in a highly predictable manner.

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