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Cancer Gene Ther. 1994 Mar;1(1):27-33.

Long-term protection of recipient mice from lethal doses of methotrexate by marrow infected with a double-copy vector retrovirus containing a mutant dihydrofolate reductase.

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Program of Molecular Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research, New York, New York 10021, USA.


A double-copy Moloney murine leukemia virus-based retroviral construct containing both the NEOr gene and a mutated dihydrofolate reductase cDNA (Leu 22-->Arg) was used to infect mouse bone marrow cells. The infected mouse marrow was returned to lethally irradiated mice. Primary, secondary, and even tertiary recipients transplanted with bone marrow cells infected with the recombinant virus showed protection from lethal methotrexate toxicity. The viral construct containing a SV-40 promoter in the U3 region of the 3' long terminal repeat appeared to be more effective than a similar construct containing the adenosine deaminase promoter, although both afforded protection. Evidence for integration into blood cells of both the NEOr gene and the mutated dihydrofolate reductase gene was obtained by polymerase chain reaction; sequencing of the amplified dihydrofolate reductase cDNA showed the presence of the point mutation. These results indicate that early hematopoietic progenitor cells in the mouse can be successfully transduced with a drug resistance gene.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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