Mid-stage intervention achieves similar efficacy as conventional early-stage treatment using gene therapy in a pre-clinical model of retinitis pigmentosa

Katherine J. Wert, Javier Sancho-Pelluz, Stephen H. Tsang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

24 Scopus citations

Abstract

Deficiencies in rod-specific cyclic guanosinemonophosphate (cGMP)phosphodiesterase-6 (PDE6) are the third most common cause of autosomal recessive retinitis pigmentosa (RP). Previously, viral gene therapy approaches on pre-clinical models with mutations in PDE6 have demonstrated that the photoreceptor cell survivalandvisual functioncanberescuedwhenthegenetherapy virus is delivered into the subretinalspace before the onset of disease. However, no studies have currently been published that analyze rescue effects after disease onset, a time when human RP patients are diagnosed by a clinician and would receive the treatment. We utilized the AAV2/8(Y733F)-Rho-Pde6α gene therapy virus and injected it into a pre-clinical model of RP with a mutation within the alpha subunit of PDE6: Pde6αD670G. These mice were previously shown to have long-term photoreceptor cell rescue when this gene therapy virus was delivered before the onset of disease. Now, we have determined that subretinal transduction of this rod-specific transgene at post-natal day (P) 21, when approximately half of the photoreceptor cells have undergone degeneration, is more efficient in rescuing cone than rod photoreceptor function long term. Therefore, AAV2/8(Y733F)-Rho-Pde6α is an effective gene therapy treatment that can be utilized in the clinical setting, in human patients who have lost portions of their peripheral visual field and are in the mid-stage of disease when they first present to an eye-care professional.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)514-523
Number of pages10
JournalHuman molecular genetics
Volume23
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2014

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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