Author(s): Ehrhardt A, Kay MA
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Abstract We have developed a new helper-dependent (HD) adenoviral vector FTC that contains 3 cis-acting sequences as stuffer DNA: a human fragment of alphoid repeat DNA, matrix-attachment regions (MARs), and the hepatocyte control region enhancer. To determine the most robust human coagulation factor IX (hFIX) expression cassette in an adenovirus, we first tested different hFIX expression sequences with or without flanking MARs in first-generation adenoviral vectors. After intravenous infusion of the vector, serum levels of up to 100 000 ng/mL hFIX (normal level, 5000 ng/mL) were obtained at nontoxic doses. In order to make a direct comparison, a first-generation and a gene-deleted vector with identical hFIX expression cassettes were constructed. Both first-generation and HD adenovirus-treated animals demonstrated a threshold effect in a dose-response study. With the administration of 2 x 10(9) transducing particles of either vector, supraphysiological serum levels of hFIX were obtained, with the highest expression (41 000 ng/mL) occurring during the first 2 months after injection. The serum factor IX concentrations, while remaining in the therapeutic range, slowly declined by 95\% over a period of 1 year. At this dose, interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor-alpha serum concentrations were elevated in animals that received the first-generation but not the HD vector. This study compares the properties of a gene-deleted and first-generation adenovirus with equivalent expression cassettes and suggests that the cis-DNA elements contained in the vector and expression cassette have important effects on gene expression in vivo.
This article was published in Blood
and referenced in Journal of Genetic Syndromes & Gene Therapy