Make Research and Therapy More Targeted Using Tissue Specific AAV Plasmids

21 Aug 2014
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Viral vectors are a new class of biologics that help treat diseases caused by defective gene function / proteins (“gene therapy”). More than 20 companies worldwide, the majority of which originate in the United States, are applying viral vectors to conduct clinical studies.

A key hurdle when applying viral vectors is to limit the transduction (gene transfer) to the appropriate cells of a specific tissue without affecting their surrounding environment. But, how can an expression system differentiate between tissue and even cell type? SIRION Biotech, in cooperation with U of Munich (LMU) and U of Cologne, has developed a line of viral vectors with specific promoters that are only active in a specific set of targeted cells to initiate the desired gene expression. Using this method, the gene of interest is only being expressed in the targeted tissue which is relevant for the desired therapy. This improves the effectiveness of the therapy and also addresses safety concerns by reducing the likelihood of side effects.

Recently the company announced a new line of cell specific AAV construction plasmids, controlling expression in brain and retinal sensory cells, liver, cardiac and skeletal muscle. They are based on the commonly used AAV 2 single strand serotype and contain a classical multiple cloning site (MCS) for easy, customized manipulation by the experimenter.

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SIRION BIOTECH GmbH
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Kathryn Rix
Editorial Assistant