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Vascular Adventitia Is a Suitable Compartment to Transplant Transduced Vascular Smooth Muscle Cells for Ex Vivo Gene Expression

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Vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMC) are ideal for systemic gene therapy because of their proximity to blood vessels and they have demonstrated long-term exogenous gene expression in vivo. However, the procedure generally followed to seed the transduced VSMC onto arteries denuded of endothelial cells usually induces stenosis and thrombosis, with a consequent high risk for use in humans. We demonstrate here that the vascular adventitia is a suitable place to introduce transduced VSMC and to secrete therapeutic proteins into the blood stream by a simple procedure, avoiding postoperative vascular complications. Transduced VSMC, with the retroviral vectors carrying the human growth hormone gene (hGH), were seeded into the adventitia of the rat abdominal aorta by single injection of a cell suspension. Based on the hGH and anti-hGH production in serum and on histological analysis of the removed aortas, we demonstrated hGH production over the 2-month experimental period. None of the animals used in the experiment showed stenosis, thrombosis, or other vascular or visible physiological abnormalities.

Keywords: Adventitia; Key words: Smooth muscle cells; Retrov

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: *Department of Biophysics, UNIFESP-EPM, São Paulo, 04023-062, Brazil 2: †Department of Pediatrics, UNIFESP-EPM, São Paulo, 04023-062, Brazil 3: ‡Department of Pathology, UNIFESP-EPM, São Paulo, 04023-062, Brazil 4: §Laboratory of Pathology, INCOR-USP, São Paulo, 05403-000, Brazil

Publication date: June 1, 2002

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.

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