Helper-Dependent Adenovirus Is Superior to First-Generation Adenovirus for Expressing Transgenes in Atherosclerosis-Prone Arteries
Objective—Vascular gene transfer is a powerful tool for investigating and treating vascular diseases; however, its utility is limited by brevity of transgene expression and vector-associated inflammation. Helper-dependent adenovirus (HDAd), an advanced-generation adenovirus that lacks all viral genes, is superior to first-generation adenovirus (FGAd) in normal rabbit arteries. We compared HDAd to FGAd in arteries of cholesterol-fed rabbits, a model of early atherogenesis in which transgene expression might be decreased, and inflammation increased.
Methods and Results—Carotid arteries of chow- and cholesterol-fed rabbits were infused with FGAd, HDAd, or medium. HDAd expressed a transgene at least as well in arteries of cholesterol-fed rabbits as in arteries of chow-fed rabbits and expressed more durably than FGAd. In arteries of cholesterol-fed rabbits, HDAd stimulated less intimal growth, lipid deposition, and inflammation than FGAd. Neither vector affected phenylephrine-induced contraction or nitroprusside-mediated relaxation; however, both vectors decreased maximal acetylcholine-stimulated vasorelaxation. The relative absence of intimal growth in HDAd arteries could interfere with the utility of this model for testing atheroprotective genes; however, both coinfusion of FGAd and extension of cholesterol feeding yielded larger intimal lesions, on which atheroprotective genes could be tested.
Conclusion—HDAd is superior to FGAd for expression of transgenes in atherosclerosis-prone arteries.
- Received April 8, 2010.
- Accepted March 15, 2011.
- © 2011 American Heart Association, Inc.