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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1996 Oct 15;93(21):11974-9.

Adenovirus-mediated gene delivery into neuronal precursors of the adult mouse brain.

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Department of Cell Biology, Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY 10021, USA.


Precursor cells found in the subventricular zone (SVZ) of the adult brain can undergo cell division and migrate long distances before differentiating into mature neurons. We have investigated the possibility of introducing genes stably into this population of cells. Replication-defective adenoviruses were injected into the SVZ of the lateral ventricle of adult mice. The adenoviruses carried a cDNA for the LacZ reporter or the human p75 neurotrophin receptor, for which species-specific antibodies are available. Injection of the viruses into the SVZ led to efficient labeling of neuronal precursors. Two months after viral injection, infected cells were detected in the olfactory bulb, a significant distance from the site of injection. Labeled periglomerular and granular neurons with extensive dendritic arborization were found in the olfactory bulb. These results demonstrate that foreign genes can be efficiently introduced into neuronal precursor cells. Furthermore, adenovirus-directed infection can lead to long-term stable gene expression in progenitor cells found in the adult central nervous system.

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