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Mol Ther. 2006 Oct;14(4):514-24. Epub 2006 Aug 7.

In vivo gene transfer into adult stem cells in unconditioned mice by in situ delivery of a lentiviral vector.

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Division of Experimental Hematology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH 45249, USA.


The potential of in vivo lentivirus-mediated bone marrow stem cell gene transfer by bone cavity injection, which could take full advantage of any source of stem cells present there, has not been previously explored. Such an approach may avoid several difficulties encountered by ex vivo hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) gene transfer. We sought to determine if efficient gene transfer could be achieved in HSC and mesenchymal stem/progenitor cells (MSC) by intrafemoral injection of a lentivirus vector in mice. Four months after injection, up to 12% GFP-expressing cells were observed in myeloid and lymphoid subpopulations. Significant transduction efficiencies were seen in Lin(-)c-kit(+)Sca1(+) HSC/progenitors and CFU with multilineage potential, which were also confirmed by duplex PCR analysis of progenitor-derived colonies. Four months after secondary BMT, we observed 8.1 to 15% vector(+) CFU in all recipients. Integration analysis by LAM-PCR demonstrated that multiple transduced clones contributed to hematopoiesis in these animals. We also showed that GFP-expressing MSC retained multilineage differentiation potential, with 2.9 to 8.8% GFP-containing CFU-fibroblasts detected in both injected and BMT recipients. Our data provide evidence that adult stem cells in bone marrow can be efficiently transduced "in situ" by in vivo vector administration without preconditioning. This approach could lead to a novel application for treatment of human diseases.

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