Percutaneous transplantation of genetically-modified autologous fibroblasts in the rabbit femoral artery: a novel approach for cardiovascular gene therapy

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Abstract

Objective: Arterial cell and gene therapies are promising strategies for the treatment of cardiovascular diseases; however, the optimal cell type and delivery technique for such treatment remain to be determined. The aim of the present study was to design a new approach for arterial cell and gene therapy in which genetically modified autologous skin fibroblasts are percutaneously delivered in stented rabbit femoral arteries in vivo. Methods: Autologous skin fibroblasts underwent in vitro transfection with the cationic lipid FuGene and plasmids expressing the human form of the tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (hTIMP-1) or nls-LacZ reporter genes. Result: Transfection efficiency was about 50% and there were high levels of hTIMP-1 secretion up to 14 days after gene transfer. We demonstrated the feasibility of in vivo percutaneous transplantation of fluorescent fibroblasts in the rabbit femoral artery. Results were confirmed by scanning electron microscopy. In vivo local delivery of hTIMP-1-expressing fibroblasts in stented femoral arteries also resulted in high-levels of hTIMP-1 secretion ex vivo for 7 days. Fibroblast transplantation resulted in a modest increase in intimal hyperplasia at the target site, which was reversed with hTIMP-1-transfected fibroblasts. Conclusion: Percutaneous transplantation of genetically modified autologous fibroblasts could be used as a cellular platform for locoregional secretion of therapeutic proteins to treat either specific arterial diseases or the diseased organ (eg, the heart) supplied by the target artery. © 2006 The Society for Vascular Surgery.

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Mazighi, M., Tchétché, D., Gouëffic, Y., San Juan, A., Louedec, L., Hénin, D., … Feldman, L. J. (2006). Percutaneous transplantation of genetically-modified autologous fibroblasts in the rabbit femoral artery: a novel approach for cardiovascular gene therapy. Journal of Vascular Surgery, 44(5). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvs.2006.07.022

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