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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Cellular transfection to deliver alanine-glyoxylate aminotransferase to hepatocytes: a rational gene therapy for primary hyperoxaluria-1 (PH-1).

BACKGROUND: Primary hyperoxaluria-type 1 (PH-1) is a rare autosomal recessive disorder of glyoxalate metabolism caused by deficiency in the liver-specific peroxisomal enzyme alanine-glyoxalate transaminase 1 ( AGT) resulting in the increased oxidation of glyoxalate to oxalate. Accumulation of oxalate in the kidney and other soft tissues results in loss of renal function and significant morbidity. The present treatment options offer some relief in the short term, but they are not completely successful. In the present study, we tested the feasibility of corrective gene therapy for this metabolic disorder. METHODS: A cDNA library was made from HepG2 cells. PCR primers were designed for the AGT sequence with modifications to preclude mistargeting during gene delivery. Amplified AGT cDNA was cloned as a fusion protein with green fluorescent protein (GFP) using the vector EGFP-C1 (Clontech) for monitoring subcellular distribution. Sequence and expression of the fusion protein was verified. Fusion protein vectors were transfected into hepatocytes by liposomal transfection. AGT expression and subcellular distribution was monitored by GFP fluorescence. RESULTS: HepG2 cells express full-length mRNA coding for AGT as confirmed by insert size as well as sequence determination. Selective primers allowed us to generate a modified recombinant GFP- AGT fusion protein. Cellular transfections with Lipofectamine resulted in transfection efficiencies of 60-90%. The recombinant AGT did localize to peroxisomes as monitored by GFP fluorescence. CONCLUSIONS: The results demonstrate preliminary in vitro feasibility data for AGT transfection into the hepatocytes. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to attempt recombinant AGT gene therapy for treatment of primary hyperoxaluria-1.[1]


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