Adenoviral vectors can direct high-level expression of a transgene, but, due to a host immune response to adenoviral antigens, expression is of limited duration, and repetitive administration has generally been unsuccessful. Exposure to foreign proteins beginning in the neonatal period may alter or ablate the immune response. We injected adult and neonatal (immunocompetent) CD-1 mice intravenously with an adenoviral vector expressing human blood coagulation factor IX. In both groups of mice, expression of human factor IX persisted for 12-16 weeks. However, in mice initially injected as adults, repeat administration of the vector resulted in no detectable expression of the transgene, whereas in mice initially injected in the neonatal period, repeat administration resulted in high-level expression of human factor IX. We show that animals that fail to express the transgene on repeat administration have developed high-titer neutralizing antibodies to adenovirus, whereas those that do express factor IX have not. This experimental model suggests that newborn mice can be tolerized to adenoviral vectors and demonstrates that at least one repeat injection of the adenoviral vector is possible; the model will be useful in elucidating the immunologic mechanisms underlying successful repeat administration of adenoviral vectors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3056-3061
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number7
StatePublished - Apr 2 1996


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