BACKGROUND: To circumvent the paucity of the primary adenovirus (Ad5) receptor and the non-specific Ad5 tropism in the context of uterine leiomyoma cells, Ad5 modification strategies would be beneficial. METHODS: We screened several modified adenoviruses to identify the most efficient and selective virus toward human leiomyoma cells to be used as candidate for delivering therapeutic genes. We propagated: wild-type Ad5-luc, fiber-modified viruses: ad5 RGD-luc, Ad5-Sigma-luc, Ad5/3-luc and Ad5-CAV2-luc, as well as transcriptional targeted viruses: ad5 survivin-luc, Ad5-heparanase-luc, Ad5-MSLN-CRAD-luc and Ad5-SLPI-luc, on 293 cells and purified them by double CsCL density centrifugation. Then we transfected primary cultures of human leiomyoma cells derived from fibroids of four different patients, telomerase-immortalized human leiomyoma cell line (huLM), telomerase-immortalized normal human myometrial cell line (HM9) and immortalized normal human liver cells (THLE3) with the viruses at 5, 10 and 50 plaque-forming units (PFU)/cell. After 48 h, luciferase activities were measured and normalized to the total cellular protein content. RESULTS: Ad5-RGD-luc and Ad5-CAV2-luc, Ad5-SLPI-luc and Ad5-MSLN-CRAD-luc at 5, 10 and 50 pfu/cell showed significantly higher expression levels of luciferase activity in both primary and immortalized human leiomyoma cells when compared with Ad5-Luc. Additionally, these modified viruses demonstrated selectivity toward leiomyoma cells, compared with myometrial cells and exhibited lower liver cell transduction, compared with Ad5-luc, at the same dose levels. CONCLUSIONS: Ad5-CAV2-luc, Ad5-RGD-luc, Ad5-SLPI-luc and Ad5-MSLN-CRAD-luc are promising delivery vehicles in the context of leiomyoma gene therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)514-524
Number of pages11
JournalHuman Reproduction
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2008


  • Adenovirus targeting strategies
  • Gene therapy
  • Uterine leiomyoma


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