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Hum Cell. 2004 Mar;17(1):17-28.

Liposome-mediated gene therapy in the kidney.

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Department of Urology, National Defense Medical College, 3-2 Namiki, Tokorozawa, Saitama 359-8513, Japan.


Gene therapy directed to the kidney has been attempted to improve renal disorders such as inherited kidney diseases and common renal diseases that cause interstitial fibrosis, tubular atrophy, and glomerulosclerosis. Viral and non-viral vectors have been tried and been modulated to obtain sufficient transgene expression. However, gene delivery to the kidney is usually difficult because of characteristics of renal cell biology. Among non-viral vectors, the liposome system is a promising procedure for kidney-targeted gene therapy. Using cationic liposome, tubular cells were effectively transduced by retrograde injection of liposome/cDNA complex. Although transgene expression was reportedly modest using cationic liposomes, this method improved renal disease models such as carbonic anhydrase II deficiency and unilateral ureteral obstruction. In contrast, HVJ-liposome system is an effective transfection method to glomerular cells using intra-renal arterial infusion and improved glomerular disease models such as glomerulonephritis and glomerulosclerosis. In addition, intra-renal pelvic injection of DNA by HVJ-liposome system showed transgene expression in interstitial fibroblasts. In kidney-targeted gene therapy, liposome-mediated gene transfer is an attractive method because of its simplicity and reduced toxicity. In spite of modest transgene expression, several renal disease models were successfully modulated by liposome system. Although one limitation of liposome-mediated gene delivery is the duration of transgene expression, the liposome/cDNA complex can be repeatedly administered due to the absence of an immune response.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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