Vaccinia as a vector for gene delivery.

Gene therapy is a promising approach, yet so far it has shown limited effectiveness in many clinical trials, mainly due to insufficient gene transduction. Recombinant vaccinia virus (rVV) has been well developed as a gene delivery vector, initially for protein expression in mammalian cells. rVV has been further developed to express antigens in vivo in generating immunity for protection against specific infectious diseases and cancer. rVVs, as non-replicating viral vectors, have been demonstrated for their great potential as vaccines, for their diminished cytopathic effects, high levels of protein expression and strong immunogenicity, and they are relatively safe in animals and in human patients. A number of clinical trials using rVVs as vaccines have shown promising results for treating infectious diseases and cancer. In the last few years, due to its exceptional ability to replicate in tumour cells, the Western Reserve strain vaccinia has been explored as a replicating oncolytic virus for cancer virotherapy. As more is learned about the functions of viral gene products in controlling the mammalian cell cycle and in disabling cellular defence mechanisms, specific viral functions can be augmented or eliminated to enhance antitumour efficacy and improve tumour cell targeting. General mechanisms by which this oncolytic virus achieves the antitumour efficacy and specificity are reviewed. Specifically, the deletion of the viral genes for thymidine kinase and vaccinia growth factor resulted in a vaccinia mutant with enhanced tumour targeting activity and fully retaining its efficiency of replication in cancer cells. Other potential strategies for improving this vector for gene delivery will also be discussed in this review.
AuthorsZ Sheng Guo, David L Bartlett
JournalExpert opinion on biological therapy (Expert Opin Biol Ther) Vol. 4 Issue 6 Pg. 901-17 (Jun 2004) ISSN: 1471-2598 [Print] England
PMID15174972 (Publication Type: Journal Article, Review)
Chemical References
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Animals
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Gene Transfer Techniques
  • Genetic Therapy (methods)
  • Genetic Vectors
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents (therapeutic use)
  • Models, Biological
  • Neoplasms (therapy)
  • Poxviridae (genetics)
  • Time Factors
  • Vaccinia virus (genetics)

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