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Latest Articles on Gene Therapy

Overview of latest articles and publications on gene therapy in PubMed, including Human Gene Therapy, Journal of Molecular Medicine and Journal of Gene Medicine. PubMed is a service of the US National Library of Medicine that includes over 18 million citations from MEDLINE and other life science journals.


  • Second tyrosine kinase inhibitor discontinuation attempt in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia.
    Second tyrosine kinase inhibitor discontinuation attempt in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia. [Journal Article]Cancer 2017 Jul 25.CLegros L, Nicolini FE, Etienne G, et al. This study is the first to demonstrate that a second TKI discontinuation attempt is safe and that a first failed attempt at discontinuing TKI does not preclude a second successful attempt. Cancer 2017....Publisher Full TextSeveral studies have demonstrated that approximately one-half of patients with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) who receive treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) and achieve and maintain a deep molecular response (DMR) are able to successfully discontinue therapy. In patients who have a molecular relapse, a DMR is rapidly regained upon treatment re-initiation.The authors report the results from RE-STIM, a French observational, multicenter study that evaluated treatment-free remission (TFR) in 70 patients who re-attempted TKI discontinuation after a first unsuccessful attempt. After the second TKI discontinuation attempt, the trigger for treatment re-introduction was the loss of a major molecular response in all patients.The median follow-up was 38.3 months (range, 4.7-117 months), and 45 patients (64.3%) lost a major molecular response after a median time off therapy of 5.3 months (range, 2-42 months). TFR rates at 12, 24, and 36 months were 48% (95% confidence interval [CI], 37.6%-61.5%), 42% (95% CI, 31.5%-55.4%), and 35% (95% CI, 24.4%-49.4%), respectively. No progression toward advanced-phase CML occurred, and no efficacy issue was observed upon TKI re-introduction. In univariate analysis, the speed of molecular relapse after the first TKI discontinuation attempt was the only factor significantly associated with outcome. The TFR rate at 24 months was 72% (95% CI, 48.8%-100%) in patients who remained in DMR within the first 3 months after the first TKI discontinuation and 36% (95% CI, 25.8%-51.3%) for others.This study is the first to demonstrate that a second TKI discontinuation attempt is safe and that a first failed attempt at discontinuing TKI does not preclude a second successful attempt. Cancer 2017. © 2017 American Cancer Society.

  • The Role of Discoidin Domain Receptor 1 in Inflammation, Fibrosis and Renal Disease.
    The Role of Discoidin Domain Receptor 1 in Inflammation, Fibrosis and Renal Disease. [Journal Article]Nephron 2017 Jul 26.NDorison A, Dussaule JC, Chatziantoniou C Discoidin domain receptors (DDRs) are a family of 2 non-integrin collagen receptors, DDR1 and DDR2, which display a tyrosine kinase activity. They are mainly expressed during embryonic development and ...Publisher Full TextDiscoidin domain receptors (DDRs) are a family of 2 non-integrin collagen receptors, DDR1 and DDR2, which display a tyrosine kinase activity. They are mainly expressed during embryonic development and their role during adulthood is very limited. DDR1 has been widely studied in several types of cancers, in atherosclerosis and fibrosis, but also in chronic kidney disease (CKD). This review focuses on the role of DDR1 in chronic nephropathies and on the effect of its deletion in the pathological processes involved in renal disease progression. DDR1 was shown to be de novo expressed in several models of experimental CKD. Its genetic or pharmaco-genetic inhibition led to the preservation of renal structure and function, and to decreased inflammatory influx and fibrosis. Furthermore, delayed pharmaco-genetic inhibition of DDR1 led to significant protection in models of renal disease. These results demonstrate the involvement of DDR1 in inflammatory and fibrotic processes occurring during CKD and the beneficial effect of its inhibition. Thus, DDR1 could be an interesting therapeutic target to treat renal pathologies.

  • Models for discovery of targeted therapy in genetic epileptic encephalopathies.
    Models for discovery of targeted therapy in genetic epileptic encephalopathies. [Journal Article, Review]J Neurochem 2017 Jul 25.JNMaljevic S, Reid CA, Petrou S Epileptic encephalopathies are severe disorders emerging in the first days to years of life that commonly include refractory seizures, various types of movement disorders, and different levels of devel...Publisher Full TextEpileptic encephalopathies are severe disorders emerging in the first days to years of life that commonly include refractory seizures, various types of movement disorders, and different levels of developmental delay. In recent years, many de novo occurring variants have been identified in individuals with these devastating disorders. To unravel disease mechanisms the functional impact of detected variants associated with epileptic encephalopathies is investigated in a range of cellular and animal models. This review addresses efforts to advance and use such models to identify specific molecular and cellular targets for the development of novel therapies. We focus on ion channels as the best-studied group of epilepsy genes. Given the clinical and genetic heterogeneity of epileptic encephalopathy disorders, experimental models that can reflect this complexity are critical for the development of disease mechanisms based targeted therapy. The convergence of technological advances in gene sequencing, stem cell biology, genome editing, high throughput functional screening together with massive unmet clinical needs provides unprecedented opportunities and imperatives for precision medicine in epileptic encephalopathies. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  • Bioinformatics analysis of RNA-seq data revealed critical genes in colon adenocarcinoma.
    Bioinformatics analysis of RNA-seq data revealed critical genes in colon adenocarcinoma. [Journal Article]Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci 2017 Jul; 21(13):3012-3020.ERXi WD, Liu YJ, Sun XB, et al. Several critical genes and relevant drugs, TFs and miRNAs were revealed in COAD. These findings could advance the understanding of the disease and benefit therapy development.RNA-seq data of colon adenocarcinoma (COAD) were analyzed with bioinformatics tools to discover critical genes in the disease. Relevant small molecule drugs, transcription factors (TFs) and microRNAs (miRNAs) were also investigated.RNA-seq data of COAD were downloaded from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA). Differential analysis was performed with package edgeR. False positive discovery (FDR) < 0.05 and |log2 (fold change)|>1 were set as the cut-offs to screen out differentially expressed genes (DEGs). Gene coexpression network was constructed with package Ebcoexpress. GO enrichment analysis was performed for the DEGs in the gene coexpression network with DAVID. Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway enrichment analysis was also performed for the genes with KOBASS 2.0. Modules were identified with MCODE of Cytoscape. Relevant small molecules drugs were predicted by Connectivity map. Relevant miRNAs and TFs were searched by WebGestalt.A total of 457 DEGs, including 255 up-regulated and 202 down-regulated genes, were identified from 437 COAD and 39 control samples. A gene coexpression network was constructed containing 40 DEGs and 101 edges. The genes were mainly associated with collagen fibril organization, extracellular matrix organization and translation. Two modules were identified from the gene coexpression network, which were implicated in muscle contraction and extracellular matrix organization, respectively. Several critical genes were disclosed, such as MYH11, COL5A2 and ribosomal proteins. Nine relevant small molecule drugs were identified, such as scriptaid and STOCK1N-35874. Accordingly, a total of 17 TFs and 10 miRNAs related to COAD were acquired, such as ETS2, NFAT, AP4, miR-124A, MiR-9, miR-96 and let-7.Several critical genes and relevant drugs, TFs and miRNAs were revealed in COAD. These findings could advance the understanding of the disease and benefit therapy development.

  • Long-term microdystrophin gene therapy is effective in a canine model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
    Long-term microdystrophin gene therapy is effective in a canine model of Duchenne muscular dystrophy. [Journal Article]Nat Commun 2017 Jul 25.:16105.NCLe Guiner C, Servais L, Montus M, et al. Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an incurable X-linked muscle-wasting disease caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Gene therapy using highly functional microdystrophin genes and recombinant ...Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is an incurable X-linked muscle-wasting disease caused by mutations in the dystrophin gene. Gene therapy using highly functional microdystrophin genes and recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) vectors is an attractive strategy to treat DMD. Here we show that locoregional and systemic delivery of a rAAV2/8 vector expressing a canine microdystrophin (cMD1) is effective in restoring dystrophin expression and stabilizing clinical symptoms in studies performed on a total of 12 treated golden retriever muscular dystrophy (GRMD) dogs. Locoregional delivery induces high levels of microdystrophin expression in limb musculature and significant amelioration of histological and functional parameters. Systemic intravenous administration without immunosuppression results in significant and sustained levels of microdystrophin in skeletal muscles and reduces dystrophic symptoms for over 2 years. No toxicity or adverse immune consequences of vector administration are observed. These studies indicate safety and efficacy of systemic rAAV-cMD1 delivery in a large animal model of DMD, and pave the way towards clinical trials of rAAV-microdystrophin gene therapy in DMD patients.

  • Increased baseline RUNX2, caspase 3 and p21 gene expressions in the peripheral blood of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug-naïve rheumatoid arthritis patients are associated with improved clinical response to methotrexate therapy.
    Increased baseline RUNX2, caspase 3 and p21 gene expressions in the peripheral blood of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug-naïve rheumatoid arthritis patients are associated with improved clinical response to methotrexate therapy. [Journal Article]Int J Rheum Dis 2017 Jul 25.IJTchetina EV, Demidova NV, Markova GA, et al. Our results suggest that the expressions of MMP-9 and ULK1 might be associated with disease activity. Increased baseline gene expressions of RUNX2, p21 and caspase 3 in the peripheral blood might predi...Publisher Full TextTo investigate the potential of the baseline gene expression in the whole blood of disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drug-naïve rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients for predicting the response to methotrexate (MTX) treatment.Twenty-six control subjects and 40 RA patients were examined. Clinical, immunological and radiographic parameters were assessed before and after 24 months of follow-up. The gene expressions in the whole blood were measured using real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. The protein concentrations in peripheral blood mononuclear cells were quantified using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Receiver operating characteristic curve analyses were used to suggest thresholds that were associated with the prediction of the response.Decreases in the disease activity at the end of the study were accompanied by significant increases in joint space narrowing score (JSN). Positive correlations between the expressions of the Unc-51-like kinase 1 (ULK1) and matrix metalloproteinase 9 (MMP-9) genes with the level of C-reactive protein and MMP-9 expression with Disease Activity Score of 28 joints (DAS28) and swollen joint count were noted at baseline. The baseline tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α gene expression was positively correlated with JSN at the end of the follow-up, whereas p21, caspase 3, and runt-related transcription factor (RUNX)2 were correlated with the ΔDAS28 values.Our results suggest that the expressions of MMP-9 and ULK1 might be associated with disease activity. Increased baseline gene expressions of RUNX2, p21 and caspase 3 in the peripheral blood might predict better responses to MTX therapy.

  • Telomerase enzyme deficiency promotes metabolic dysfunction in murine hepatocytes upon dietary stress.
    Telomerase enzyme deficiency promotes metabolic dysfunction in murine hepatocytes upon dietary stress. [Journal Article]Liver Int 2017 Jul 25.LIAlves-Paiva RM, Kajigaya S, Feng X, et al. Short telomeres and genetic telomerase defects are risk factors for some human liver diseases, ranging from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) to cirrhos...Publisher Full TextShort telomeres and genetic telomerase defects are risk factors for some human liver diseases, ranging from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) to cirrhosis. In murine models, telomere dysfunction has been shown to metabolically compromise hematopoietic cells, liver, and heart via the activation of the p53-PGC axis METHODS: Tert- and Terc-deficient mice were challenged with liquid high fat diet (HFD). Liver metabolic contents were analyzed by CE-TOFMS and liver fat content was confirmed by confocal and electronic microscopy RESULTS: Tert-deficient but not Terc-deficient mice develop hepatocyte injury and frank steatosis when challenged with liquid HFD. Upon HFD, Tert(-/-) hepatocytes fail to engage the citric acid cycle (TCA), with an imbalance of NADPH/NADP+ and NADH/NAD+ ratios and depletion of intermediates of TCA cycle, such as cis-aconitic acid. Telomerase deficiency caused an intrinsic metabolic defect unresponsive to environmental challenge. Chemical inhibition of telomerase by zidovudine recapitulated the abnormal Tert(-/-) metabolic phenotype in Terc(-/-) hepatocytes CONCLUSIONS: Our findings indicate that in telomeropathies short telomeres are not the only molecular trigger and telomerase enzyme deficiency provokes hepatocyte metabolic dysfunction, abrogates response to environmental challenge, and causes cellular injury and steatosis, providing a mechanism for liver damage in telomere diseases. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  • First report of carglumic acid in a patient with citrullinemia type 1 (argininosuccinate synthetase deficiency).
    First report of carglumic acid in a patient with citrullinemia type 1 (argininosuccinate synthetase deficiency). [Case Reports]J Clin Pharm Ther 2017 Jul 25.JCKose E, Kuyum P, Aksoy B, et al. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report describing the long-term use of carglumic acid in a patient with argininosuccinate synthetase deficiency.Publisher Full TextCarglumic acid is a structural analogue of human N-acetylglutamate, which has become an alternative therapeutic option for hyperammonaemia in organic acidaemias such as isovaleric acidaemia, methylmalonic acidaemia and propionic acidaemia, and it has been suggested in other urea cycle disorders such as ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency and carbamoyl phosphate synthetase 1 deficiency.A male newborn was diagnosed with citrullinemia after serum amino acid analyses revealed markedly elevated citrulline concentration together with homozygous p.Gly390Arg mutation in ASS1 gene. The ammonia concentration decreased and blood gas analysis normalized after peritoneal dialysis was performed for three days. Also, sodium benzoate, L-arginine and parenteral nutrition with glucose and lipid therapy were initiated. Until 1 year of age, low adherence to sodium benzoate therapy due to unpleasant taste caused hyperammonaemic episodes and obligated us to initiate carglumic acid (100 mg/kg/day) therapy. During treatment with carglumic acid, the median ammonia level was 45.6 µmol/L. The patient's treatment was switched from carglumic acid to sodium phenylbutyrate when he was 4.5 years old. Currently, the patient is 6.5 years old and remains under follow-up with sodium phenylbutyrate, L-arginine and protein-restricted diet. Plasma ornithine level was found to be significantly lower during the carglumic acid treatment compared to other treatments (P=.039). Also, glutamic acid was found to be higher during the sodium benzoate treatment period compared to other treatment periods (P=.024).To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report describing the long-term use of carglumic acid in a patient with argininosuccinate synthetase deficiency.

  • Hypoxia-Inducible Factors: Master Regulators of Cancer Progression.
    Hypoxia-Inducible Factors: Master Regulators of Cancer Progression. [Journal Article, Review]Trends Cancer 2016 Dec; 2(12):758-770.TCSchito L, Semenza GL Intratumoral hypoxia (reduced O2 availability) is a common finding in human cancer and leads to increased activity of hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), which regulate the expression of genes that contr...Intratumoral hypoxia (reduced O2 availability) is a common finding in human cancer and leads to increased activity of hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), which regulate the expression of genes that contribute to angiogenesis, metabolic reprogramming, extracellular matrix remodeling, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, motility, invasion, metastasis, cancer stem cell maintenance, immune evasion, and resistance to chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Conventional anticancer therapies target well-oxygenated and proliferating cancer cells, whereas there are no approved therapies that target hypoxic cancer cells, despite growing clinical and experimental evidence indicating that intratumoral hypoxia is a critical microenvironmental factor driving cancer progression. In this review, our current understanding of the consequences of HIF activity and the translational potential of targeting HIFs for cancer therapy are discussed.

  • Intergenically Spliced Chimeric RNAs in Cancer.
    Intergenically Spliced Chimeric RNAs in Cancer. [Journal Article, Review]Trends Cancer 2016 Sep; 2(9):475-484.TCJia Y, Xie Z, Li H Gene fusions and their encoded products (fusion RNAs and proteins) are viewed as one of the hallmarks of cancer. Traditionally, they were thought to be generated solely by chromosomal rearrangements. H...Gene fusions and their encoded products (fusion RNAs and proteins) are viewed as one of the hallmarks of cancer. Traditionally, they were thought to be generated solely by chromosomal rearrangements. However, recent discoveries of trans-splicing and cis-splicing events between neighboring genes suggest that there are other mechanisms to generate chimeric fusion RNAs without corresponding changes in DNA. In addition, chimeric RNAs have been detected in normal physiology, complicating the use of fusions in cancer detection and therapy. By contrast, 'intergenically spliced' fusion RNAs represent a new repertoire of biomarkers and therapeutic targets. We review here current knowledge on chimeric RNAs and implications for cancer detection and treatment, and discuss outstanding questions for the advancement of the field.

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