Alpharetroviral Vectors: From a Cancer-Causing Agent to a Useful Tool for Human Gene Therapy
Suerth, Julia D.
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CitationSuerth, Julia D., Verena Labenski, and Axel Schambach. 2014. “Alpharetroviral Vectors: From a Cancer-Causing Agent to a Useful Tool for Human Gene Therapy.” Viruses 6 (12): 4811-4838. doi:10.3390/v6124811. http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/v6124811.
AbstractGene therapy using integrating retroviral vectors has proven its effectiveness in several clinical trials for the treatment of inherited diseases and cancer. However, vector-mediated adverse events related to insertional mutagenesis were also observed, emphasizing the need for safer therapeutic vectors. Paradoxically, alpharetroviruses, originally discovered as cancer-causing agents, have a more random and potentially safer integration pattern compared to gammaretro- and lentiviruses. In this review, we provide a short overview of the history of alpharetroviruses and explain how they can be converted into state-of-the-art gene delivery tools with improved safety features. We discuss development of alpharetroviral vectors in compliance with regulatory requirements for clinical translation, and provide an outlook on possible future gene therapy applications. Taken together, this review is a broad overview of alpharetroviral vectors spanning the bridge from their parental virus discovery to their potential applicability in clinical settings.
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