5-Fluorocytosine increases the toxicity of Wnt-targeting replicating adenoviruses that expresss cytosine deaminase as a late gene

C Fuerer, Richard Derek Iggo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Clinical studies with oncolytic adenoviruses have shown that existing viruses are safe but lack efficacy. To selectively increase the toxicity of oncolytic adenoviruses targeting colon tumours, we have inserted the yeast cytosine deaminase gene (yCD) after the fibre gene in the major late transcript. yCD was expressed using either an internal ribosome entry site (IRES) or by alternative splicing of a new exon analogous to the Ad41 long fibre exon. The IRES-CD virus gave higher yCD expression on Western blots. Both approaches result in yCD expression restricted to the period after viral DNA replication. Viral burst size was reduced by less than similar to10-fold by 5-fluorocytosine (5-FC), showing that expression of yCD as a late gene is compatible with virus replication. Cytopathic effect assays in colon cancer cell lines showed that both yCD viruses have similar to10-fold increased toxicity in the presence of the prodrug 5-FC, which is converted to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) by yCD. Toxicity was higher following addition of 5-FC immediately after infection. The largest gain in toxicity was seen in HT29 colon cancer cells, which are the least permissive colon cancer cells for the parental virus, indicating that the new 5-FC/yCD viruses may have broader applications for colon cancer therapy than their predecessors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142-151
Number of pages10
JournalGene Therapy
Volume11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2004

Keywords

  • colon cancer
  • cytosine deaminase
  • suicide gene
  • internal ribosome entry site
  • alternative splicing
  • DOUBLE SUICIDE GENE
  • TUMOR-SPECIFIC REPLICATION
  • E3 REGION
  • CANCER-CELLS
  • CONSTITUTIVE ACTIVATION
  • ONCOLYTIC ADENOVIRUSES
  • ENZYME/PRODRUG THERAPY
  • ANTITUMOR-ACTIVITY
  • SIGNALING PATHWAY
  • PROSTATE-CANCER

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