Tyrosine hydroxylase gene transfections to different sites of striatum in the rat model of Parkinson’s disease


The use of gene therapy has been intensively studied as a potential method to treat Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other degenerative brain diseases. However, the effects of experimental measures and approaches on the outcome of gene delivery or on the physiological state of target tissues have not been analyzed as much and systematically. Therefore, we have infused adenovirus vectors expressing either a therapeutic tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) gene or a lacZ reporter gene into striatum in a rat model of PD. The experimental procedures were tested using the Ad lacZ vector in order to optimize concentrations, volumes, infusion speeds and transfection times. The expression of Ad lacZ vector was lower and declined earlier in the lesioned than unlesioned striatum suggesting that the lesion affects on the transfection efficiency and outcome of gene transfection. The effect of three different approaches of Ad TH vector transfection was compared: 1) the delivery of Ad TH gene vector alone into one single site of striatum, 2) the delivery of Ad TH gene vector alone into multiple sites of striatum, and 3) the delivery of Ad TH gene vector into one site of striatum followed by a continuous infusion of tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) cofactor with a mini pump. There was a small and transient unsignificant decrease in the turning behavior when the Ad TH vector was delivered into one site of the striatum. Simultaneous infusion into several sites or together with BH4 cofactor did not improve more the effect of gene delivery. Thus, although the effects were unsignificant, the Ad TH transfection seemed to decrease the turning behavior in the rat model of PD and the optimal effect was seen at some specific doses and time points. Furthermore, the outcome of gene therapy could depend in addition to the amount and efficacy of gene vectors also on the physiological state and experimental strategies.

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Raasmaja, A. , Lehtonen, S. , Kääriäinen, T. , Lampela, P. , Huotari, M. and Lecklin, A. (2013) Tyrosine hydroxylase gene transfections to different sites of striatum in the rat model of Parkinson’s disease. Open Journal of Genetics, 3, 30-37. doi: 10.4236/ojgen.2013.32A1004.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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