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Mol Ther. 2004 Jul;10(1):162-71.

Adenovirus-mediated transfer of siRNA against survivin induced apoptosis and attenuated tumor cell growth in vitro and in vivo.

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Department of Molecular Medicine, Sapporo Medical University, Sapporo 060-8556, Japan.


Gene targeting using short interfering RNA (siRNA) has become a common strategy to explore gene function because of its prominent efficacy and specificity. For the application of siRNA technology to gene therapy, however, still more efficient transduction of siRNA into target cells is needed. In this study, we developed an adenoviral vector harboring a tandem-type siRNA expression unit, in which sense and antisense strands composing the siRNA duplex were separately transcribed by two human U6 promoters. Targeting survivin, an antiapoptotic molecule widely overexpressed in malignancies but not detected in terminally differentiated adult tissues, this type of adenoviral vector (Adv-siSurv) successfully exerted a gene knockdown effect and induced apoptosis in HeLa, U251, and MCF-7 cells. These cancer cells, once infected with Adv-siSurv, displayed remarkably attenuated growth potential, both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, intratumoral injection of Adv-siSurv significantly suppressed tumor growth in a xenograft model using U251 glioma cells. This novel modality may be a promising tool for cancer therapy.

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