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Studies from Yonsei University Health System Yield New Data on Gene Therapy

February 20, 2014

By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Gene Therapy Weekly -- Data detailed on Biotechnology have been presented. According to news reporting originating from Seoul, South Korea, by NewsRx correspondents, research stated, "Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) have attracted much attention in regenerative medicine owing to their apparent usefulness as multi-potent replacement cells. The potential of MSC therapy can be further improved by transforming MSCs with therapeutic genes that maximize the efficacy of gene therapy and their own therapeutic ability."

Our news editors obtained a quote from the research from Yonsei University Health System, "Since most conventional transfection methodologies have shown marginal success in delivering exogenous genes into primary cultured cells, efficient gene transfer into primary MSCs is a prerequisite for the development of MSC-based gene therapy strategies to achieve repair and regeneration of damaged tissues. Herein, facially amphipathic bile acid-modified polyethyleneimine (BA-PEI) conjugates were synthesized and used to transfer hypoxia-inducible vascular endothelial growth factor gene (pHI-VEGF) in MSCs for the treatment of rat myocardial infarction. Under the optimized transfection conditions, the BA-PEI conjugates significantly increased the VEGF protein expression levels in rat MSCs, compared with traditional transfection methods such as Lipofectamine™ and branched-PEI (25 kDa). Furthermore, the prepared pHI-VEGF-engineered MSCs (VEGF-MSCs) resulted in improved cell viability, particularly during severe hypoxic exposure in vitro. The transplantation of MSCs genetically modified to overexpress VEGF by BA-PEI enhanced the capillary formation in the infarction region and eventually attenuated left ventricular remodeling after myocardial infarction in rats."

According to the news editors, the research concluded: "This study demonstrates the applicability of the BA-PEI conjugates for the efficient transfection of therapeutic genes into MSCs and the feasibility of using the genetically engineered MSCs in regenerative medicine for myocardial infarction."

For more information on this research see: MSC-based VEGF gene therapy in rat myocardial infarction model using facial amphipathic bile acid-conjugated polyethyleneimine. Biomaterials, 2014;35(5):1744-54. (Elsevier -; Biomaterials -

The news editors report that additional information may be obtained by contacting H.H. Moon, Severance Integrative Research Institute for Cerebral and Cardiovascular Disease, Yonsei University Health System, 250 Seongsanno, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 120-752, South Korea. Additional authors for this research include M.K. Joo, H. Mok, M. Lee, K.C. Hwang, S.W. Kim, J.H. Jeong, D. Choi and S.H Kim (see also Biotechnology).

Keywords for this news article include: Asia, VEGF, Biotechnology, Biomedical Engineering, Biomedicine, Seoul, Alkenes, Polyenes, South Korea, Gene Therapy, Hydrocarbons, Bioengineering, Protein Kinases, Membrane Proteins, Organic Chemicals, Polyethyleneimine, Angiogenic Proteins, Phosphotransferases, Regenerative Medicine, Growth Factor Receptors.

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Source: Gene Therapy Weekly

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