Enhancement of in vivo adenovirus-mediated gene transfer and expression by prior depletion of tissue macrophages in the target organ
Gene Transfer Techniques
Based on the hypothesis that tissue macrophages present an obstacle for adenovirus (Ad) vector-mediated gene transfer to internal organs, this study evaluated the consequences of transient depletion of Kupffer cells on subsequent transfer of the Ad vector genome and Ad vector-directed gene expression in the livers of experimental animals. Depletion of Kupffer cells in mice by intravenous administration of multilamellar liposomes containing dichloromethylene-bisphosphonate permitted subsequent intravenous administration of an Ad vector to provide a higher input of recombinant adenoviral DNA to the liver, an absolute increase in transgene expression, and a delayed clearance of the vector DNA and transgene expression. These observations suggest that the tissue macrophages pose a significant hurdle to Ad vector-mediated gene transfer and that strategies to transiently suppress macrophage defenses might be useful in enhancing the efficiency of this in vivo gene transfer system.