Better Health: Smart Health Commentary Better Health (TM): smart health commentary

Article Comments

First In-Vivo Gene Delivery Mastered?

While gene therapy has always seemed just on the verge of being right around the corner, the limitation has always been delivery of the gene. How do you get the new gene to the right cells and activated?

An in-vivo mice study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) may take us closer to a usable delivery system. Rui Maeda-Mamiya of the University of Tokyo and others were able to get diabetic mice to increase their insulin levels after delivery of a insulin 2 gene by a water-soluble fullerene.

 From the study abstract:

Water-soluble fullerenes are molecules with great potential for biological use because they can endow unique characteristics of amphipathic property and form a self-assembled structure by chemical modification. Effective gene delivery in vitro with tetra(piperazino)fullerene epoxide (TPFE) and its superiority to Lipofectin have been described in a previous report. For this study, we evaluated the efficacy of in vivo gene delivery by TPFE. Delivery of enhanced green fluorescent protein gene (EGFP) by TPFE on pregnant female ICR mice showed distinct organ selectivity compared with Lipofectin; moreover, higher gene expression by TPFE was found in liver and spleen, but not in the lung. No acute toxicity of TPFE was found for the liver and kidney, although Lipofectin significantly increased liver enzymes and blood urea nitrogen. In fetal tissues, neither TPFE nor Lipofectin induced EGFP gene expression. Delivery of insulin 2 gene to female C57/BL6 mice increased plasma insulin levels and reduced blood glucose concentrations, indicating the potential of TPFE-based gene delivery for clinical application. In conclusion, this study demonstrated effective gene delivery in vivo for the first time using a water-soluble fullerene.

PNAS Article Abstract: In vivo gene delivery by cationic tetraamino fullerene

*This blog post was originally published at Medgadget*


You may also like these posts

Read comments »


Comments are closed.

Return to article »

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

Read more »

How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

Read more »

See all interviews »

Latest Cartoon

See all cartoons »

Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

Read more »

The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

Read more »

Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

Read more »

See all book reviews »