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Gene Ther. 1996 Sep;3(9):802-10.

Evaluation of promoter strength for hepatic gene expression in vivo following adenovirus-mediated gene transfer.

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Department of Cell Biology, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Transgene expression in studies of both gene function and gene therapy may be assisted considerably through the use of transcriptional regulatory elements which permit high-level, and/or tissue-specific gene expression. We have therefore evaluated the transcriptional activities of a series of viral and cellular enhancer/promoter elements, both in vitro and in vivo. The five enhancer/promoter elements showing either high-level or hepatocyte-specific expression following transient transfection into hepatoma cells were incorporated into recombinant adenoviruses expressing human alpha 1-antitrypsin (hAAT) for in vivo studies in the liver of immunodeficient and immunocompetent mice. The human elongation factor 1 alpha gene promoter produced 2 mg/ml serum level of hAAT, which is physiologic in humans and will be therapeutic for patients with AAT deficiency. This and all other enhancer/promoters except that of the CMV-IE gene yielded persistent hAAT expression in SCID mice. These findings demonstrate that adenovirus vectors provide an effective system for studies designed to evaluate enhancer/promoter activities in vivo. Several of the enhancer/promoters examined in this study will have significant utility in adenovirus-mediated gene therapy for alpha 1-antitrypsin deficiency and other genetic disorders.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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