Preclinical Testing of the Safety and Tolerability of Lentiviral Vector-Mediated Above-Normal Alpha-L-Iduronidase Expression in Murine and Human Hematopoietic Cells Using Toxicology and Biodistribution Good Laboratory Practice Studies

Ilaria Visigalli, Stefania Delai, Francesca Ferro, Francesca Cecere, Michela Vezzoli, Francesca Sanvito, Franck Chanut, Fabrizio Benedicenti, Giulio Spinozzi, Rob Wynn, Andrea Calabria, Luigi Naldini, Eugenio Montini, Patrizia Cristofori, Alessandra Biffi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

In order to support the clinical application of hematopoietic stem cell (HSC) gene therapy for mucopolysaccharidosis I (MPS I), biosafety studies were conducted to assess the toxicity and tumorigenic potential, as well as the biodistribution of HSCs and progenitor cells (HSPCs) transduced with lentiviral vectors (LV) encoding the cDNA of the alpha-iduronidase (IDUA) gene, which is mutated in MPS I patients. To this goal, toxicology and biodistribution studies were conducted, employing Good Laboratory Practice principles. Vector integration site (IS) studies were applied in order to predict adverse consequences of vector gene transfer and to obtain HSC-related information. Overall, the results obtained in these studies provided robust evidence to support the safety and tolerability of high-efficiency LV-mediated gene transfer and above-normal IDUA enzyme expression in both murine and human HSPCs and their in vivo progeny. Taken together, these investigations provide essential safety data to support clinical testing of HSC gene therapy in MPS I patients. These studies also underline criticisms associated with the use of currently available models, and highlight the value of surrogate markers of tumorigenicity that may be further explored in the future. Notably, biological evidence supporting the efficacy of gene therapy on MPS I disease and its feasibility on patients' HSCs were also generated, employing clinical-grade LVs. Finally, the clonal contribution of LV-transduced HSPCs to hematopoiesis along serial transplantation was quantified in a minimum of 200-300 clones, with the different level of repopulating cells in primary recipients being reflected in the secondary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)813-829
Number of pages17
JournalHuman Gene Therapy
Volume27
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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