Virus-based gene therapy strategies for bone regeneration.
Gene therapy has emerged as a promising strategy for the repair and regeneration of damaged musculoskeletal tissues. Application of this paradigm to bone healing has shown enhanced efficacy in preclinical animal studies compared to conventional bone grafting approaches. This review discusses current and emerging virus-based genetic engineering strategies for the delivery of therapeutic molecules which promote skeletal regeneration. Viral gene delivery vectors are discussed in the context of bone repair in order to illustrate the challenges and applications of these methods with tissue-specific examples. Moreover the concepts discussed can be broadly applied to promote healing in a wide range of tissues. We also present important considerations involved in the application of these gene therapy techniques to a variety of osteogenic (e.g. bone marrow-derived cells) and non-osteogenic (e.g. fibroblasts and skeletal myoblasts) cell types. Criteria for the selection of regenerative molecules with soluble versus intracellular modes of action and emerging combinatorial approaches are also discussed. Overall, gene transfer technologies have the potential to overcome limitations associated with existing bone grafting approaches and may enable investigators to design therapies which more closely mimic the complex spatial and temporal cascade of proteins involved in endogenous bone development and repair.
Phillips, JE; Gersbach, CA; García, AJ
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