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Mol Ther. 2008 Jan;16(1):203-9. Epub 2007 Dec 4.

Rapid/sustained anti-anthrax passive immunity mediated by co-administration of Ad/AAV.

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Department of Genetic Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York, USA.


Achieving both immediate and sustained protection against diseases caused by bacterial toxins and extracellular pathogens is a challenge in developing biodefense therapeutics. We hypothesized that a single co-administration of an adenovirus (Ad) vector and an adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector, both expressing a pathogen-specific monoclonal antibody, would provide rapid, persistent passive immunotherapy against the pathogen. In order to test this strategy, we used the lethal toxin of Bacillus anthracis as a target of a monoclonal antibody directed against the protective antigen (PA) component of the toxin, using co-administration of an Ad vector encoding an anti-PA monoclonal antibody (AdalphaPA) and an AAV vector encoding an anti-PA monoclonal antibody (AAVrh.10alphaPA). As early as 1 day after co-administration of AdalphaPA and AAVrh.10alphaPA to mice, serum anti-PA antibody levels were detectable, and were sustained through 6 months. Importantly, animals that received both vectors were protected against toxin challenge as early as 1 day after administration and throughout the 6 month duration of the experiment. These data provide a new paradigm of genetic passive immunotherapy by co-administration of Ad and AAV vectors, each encoding a pathogen-specific monoclonal antibody, as an effective approach for both rapid and sustained protection against a bio-terror attack.

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