C. Garrison Fathman

Publication Details

  • Targeting rare populations of murine antigen-specific T lymphocytes by retroviral transduction for potential application in gene therapy for autoimmune disease JOURNAL OF IMMUNOLOGY Costa, G. L., Benson, J. M., Seroogy, C. M., Achacoso, P., Fathman, C. G., Nolan, G. P. 2000; 164 (7): 3581-3590


    CD4+ T cells are important mediators in the pathogenesis of autoimmunity and would therefore provide ideal candidates for lymphocyte-based gene therapy. However, the number of Ag-specific T cells in any single lesion of autoimmunity may be quite low. Successful gene transfer into autoantigen-specific CD4+ T cells would serve as an ideal vehicle for site-targeted gene therapy if it were possible to transduce preferentially the small number of autoantigen-specific T cells. In this study we have demonstrated that retroviral infection of CD4+ lymphocytes from either autoantigen-stimulated TCR transgenic mice, or Ag-activated immunized nontransgenic mice, with a retroviral vector (pGCIRES), resulted in the transduction of only the limited number of Ag-reactive CD4+ T cells. In contrast, polyclonal activation of the same cultures resulted in transduction of non-antigen-specific lymphocytes. Transduction of Ag-reactive CD4+ T cells with pGCIRES retrovirus encoding the regulatory genes IL-4 (IL4) and soluble TNF receptor (STNFR) resulted in stable integration and long-term expression of recombinant gene products. Moreover, expression of the pGCIRES marker protein, GFP, directly correlated with the expression of the upstream regulatory gene. Retroviral transduction of CD4+ T cells targeted specifically Ag-reactive cells and was cell cycle-dependent and evident only during the mitosis phase. These studies suggest that retroviral transduction of autoantigen-specific murine CD4+ T cells, using the pGCIRES retroviral vector, may provide a potential method to target and isolate the low frequency of autoantigen-specific murine CD4+ T cells, and provides a rational approach to gene therapy in animal models of autoimmunity.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000086020700019

    View details for PubMedID 10725713

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