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Blood. 2007 Sep 1;110(5):1448-57. Epub 2007 Apr 24.

Lentiviral vectors containing an enhancer-less ubiquitously acting chromatin opening element (UCOE) provide highly reproducible and stable transgene expression in hematopoietic cells.

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1
Centre for Immunodeficiency, Molecular Immunology Unit, Institute of Child Health, University College London, London, United Kingdom.

Abstract

Ubiquitously acting chromatin opening elements (UCOEs) consist of methylation-free CpG islands encompassing dual divergently transcribed promoters of housekeeping genes that have been shown to confer resistance to transcriptional silencing and to produce consistent and stable transgene expression in tissue culture systems. To develop improved strategies for hematopoietic cell gene therapy, we have assessed the potential of the novel human HNRPA2B1-CBX3 UCOE (A2UCOE) within the context of a self-inactivating (SIN) lentiviral vector. Unlike viral promoters, the enhancer-less A2UCOE gave rise to populations of cells that expressed a reporter transgene at a highly reproducible level. The efficiency of expression per vector genome was also markedly increased in vivo compared with vectors incorporating either spleen focus-forming virus (SFFV) or cytomegalovirus (CMV) promoters, suggesting a relative resistance to silencing. Furthermore, an A2UCOE-IL2RG vector fully restored the IL-2 signaling pathway within IL2RG-deficient human cells in vitro and successfully rescued the X-linked severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID-X1) phenotype in a mouse model of this disease. These data indicate that the A2UCOE displays highly reliable transcriptional activity within a lentiviral vector, largely overcoming insertion-site position effects and giving rise to therapeutically relevant levels of gene expression. These properties are achieved in the absence of classic enhancer activity and therefore may confer a high safety profile.

PMID:
17456723
PMCID:
PMC2629730
DOI:
10.1182/blood-2006-12-060814
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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