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Mol Ther. 2009 Jan;17(1):73-80. doi: 10.1038/mt.2008.225. Epub 2008 Oct 21.

Transduction efficiency and immune response associated with the administration of AAV8 vector into dog skeletal muscle.

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Department of Molecular Therapy, National Institute of Neuroscience, National Center of Neurology and Psychiatry, Tokyo, Japan.


Recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV)-mediated gene transfer is an attractive approach to the treatment of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). We investigated the muscle transduction profiles and immune responses associated with the administration of rAAV2 and rAAV8 in normal and canine X-linked muscular dystrophy in Japan (CXMD(J)) dogs. rAAV2 or rAAV8 encoding the lacZ gene was injected into the skeletal muscles of normal dogs. Two weeks after the injection, we detected a larger number of beta-galactosidase-positive fibers in rAAV8-transduced canine skeletal muscle than in rAAV2-transduced muscle. Although immunohistochemical analysis using anti-CD4 and anti-CD8 antibodies revealed less T-cell response to rAAV8 than to rAAV2, beta-galactosidase expression in rAAV8-injected muscle lasted for <4 weeks with intramuscular transduction. Canine bone marrow-derived dendritic cells (DCs) were activated by both rAAV2 and rAAV8, implying that innate immunity might be involved in both cases. Intravenous administration of rAAV8-lacZ into the hind limb in normal dogs and rAAV8-microdystrophin into the hind limb in CXMD(J) dogs resulted in improved transgene expression in the skeletal muscles lasting over a period of 8 weeks, but with a declining trend. The limb perfusion transduction protocol with adequate immune modulation would further enhance the rAAV8-mediated transduction strategy and lead to therapeutic benefits in DMD gene therapy.

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