- Optimization and antiviral analysis of peptide ligands for the HIV-1 packaging signal PSI (2006)
- Oral presentations Background: We selected peptide ligands for the HIV-1 packaging signal PSI by screening phage displayed peptide libraries. Peptide ligands were optimized by screening spot synthesis peptide membranes. The aim of this study is the functional characterization of these peptide ligands with respect to inhibition of HIV-1 replication. Methods: Phage displayed peptide libraries were screened with PSI-RNA structures. The Trp-rich peptide motifs were optimized for specific binding on spot synthesis peptide membranes. The best binding peptide was expressed intracellularly in fusion with RFP or linked to a protein transduction domain (PTD) for intracellular delivery. The effects on virion production were analyzed using pseudotyped lentiviral particles. Results: After positive and negative selection rounds, phages binding specifically to PSI-RNA were identified by ELISA. Peptide inserts contained conserved motifs of aromatic amino acids known to be implicated in binding of PSI-RNA by the natural Gag ligand. The filter assay identified HKWPWW as the best binding ligand for PSI-RNA, which is delivered into several cell lines by addition of a PTD. Compared to a control peptide, the HKWPWW peptide inhibited HIV-1 replication as deduced from reduced titers of culture supernatants. As HKWPWW also binds to the TAR-RNA like the natural nucleocapsid PSI-RNA ligand, the effect on Tat-TAR inhibition will also be analyzed. Currently T-cell lines are established which stably express HKWPWW as well as a control peptide, which will be infected with HIV-1 to monitor the ability of HKWPWW to inhibit wild type HIV-1 replication. Conclusion: The selection of a peptide ligand for PSI-RNA able to inhibit HIV-1 replication proves the suitability of the phage display technology for the selection of peptides binding to RNA-structures. This enables the indentification of peptides serving as leads to interfere with additional targets in the HIV-1 replication cycle.
- From bench to bedside: preclinical evaluation of a self-inactivating gammaretroviral vector for the gene therapy of X-linked chronic granulomatous disease (2013)
- Chronic granulomatous disease (CGD) is a primary immunodeficiency characterized by impaired antimicrobial activity in phagocytic cells. As a monogenic disease affecting the hematopoietic system, CGD is amenable to gene therapy. Indeed in a phase I/II clinical trial, we demonstrated a transient resolution of bacterial and fungal infections. However, the therapeutic benefit was compromised by the occurrence of clonal dominance and malignant transformation demanding alternative vectors with equal efficacy but safety-improved features. In this work we have developed and tested a self-inactivating (SIN) gammaretroviral vector (SINfes.gp91s) containing a codon-optimized transgene (gp91(phox)) under the transcriptional control of a myeloid promoter for the gene therapy of the X-linked form of CGD (X-CGD). Gene-corrected cells protected X-CGD mice from Aspergillus fumigatus challenge at low vector copy numbers. Moreover, the SINfes.gp91s vector generates substantial amounts of superoxide in human cells transplanted into immunodeficient mice. In vitro genotoxicity assays and longitudinal high-throughput integration site analysis in transplanted mice comprising primary and secondary animals for 11 months revealed a safe integration site profile with no signs of clonal dominance.
- Gentherapie der septischen Granulomatose: Chancen und Risiken : der Weg zur erfolgreichen Therapie einer angeborenen Immundefizienz (2011)
- Im Jahre 2004 sind am Universitätsklinikum Frankfurt zwei Patienten mit X-CGD gentherapeutisch behandelt worden. Nach einer initialen Phase mit Nachweis ausreichender Mengen Oxidase-positiver Zellen im Blut der Patienten und einer deutlichen klinischen Besserung vorbestehender Infektionsherde kam es zu einem Verlust der Transgenexpression durch epigenetische Veränderungen des viralen Promotors. Ferner entwickelte sich durch Insertionsmutagenese eine klonale Expansion in der Hämatopoese und schließlich ein myelodysplastisches Syndrom mit Monosomie 7 bei beiden Patienten. In der Zusammenschau mit anderen Gentherapiestudien zur X-CGD zeigt sich, dass bislang ein langanhaltendes Engraftment funktionierender genkorrigierter Zellen nur im Zusammenhang mit einer Insertionsmutagenese beobachtet wurde. Zukünftige gentherapeutische Strategien zur Behandlung der X-CGD müssen das Risiko einer Insertionsmutagenese minimieren und gleichzeitig die Effektivität des Engraftments genkorrigierter Zellen steigern. Dies soll durch den Einsatz von SIN-Vektoren sowie einer Intensivierung der Konditionierung der Patienten erreicht werden.
- Genomic instability and myelodysplasia with monosomy 7 consequent to EVI1 activation after gene therapy for chronic granulomatous disease (2010)
- Gene-modified autologous hematopoietic stem cells (HSC) can provide ample clinical benefits to subjects suffering from X-linked chronic granulomatous disease (X-CGD), a rare inherited immunodeficiency characterized by recurrent, often life-threatening bacterial and fungal infections. Here we report on the molecular and cellular events observed in two young adults with X-CGD treated by gene therapy in 2004. After the initial resolution of bacterial and fungal infections, both subjects showed silencing of transgene expression due to methylation of the viral promoter, and myelodysplasia with monosomy 7 as a result of insertional activation of ecotropic viral integration site 1 (EVI1). One subject died from overwhelming sepsis 27 months after gene therapy, whereas a second subject underwent an allogeneic HSC transplantation. Our data show that forced overexpression of EVI1 in human cells disrupts normal centrosome duplication, linking EVI1 activation to the development of genomic instability, monosomy 7 and clonal progression toward myelodysplasia.