Recombinant adeno-associated virus (AAV) type 2 (rAAV) vectors have recently been shown to have great utility as gene transfer agents both in vitro and in vivo. One of the problems associated with the use of rAAV vectors has been the difficulty of large-scale vector production. Low- efficiency plasmid transfection of the rAAV vector and complementing AAV type 2 (AAV-2) functions (rep and cap) followed by superinfection with adenovirus has been the standard approach to rAAV production. The objectives of this study were to demonstrate the ability of a recombinant herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) amplicon expressing AAV-2 Rep and Cap to support replication and packaging of rAAV vectors. HSV-1 amplicon vectors were constructed which contain the AAV-2 rep and cap genes under control of their native promoters (p5, p19, and p40). An HSV-1 amplicon vector, HSV-RC/KOS or HSV-RC/d27, was generated by supplying helper functions with either wild-type HSV-1 (KOS strain) or the ICP27-deleted mutant of HSV-1, d27-1, respectively. Replication of the amplicon stocks is not inhibited by the presence of AAV-2 Rep proteins, which highlights important differences between HSV-1 and adenovirus replication and the mechanism of providing helper function for productive AAV infection. Coinfection of rAAV and HSV-RC/KOS resulted in the replication and amplification of rAAV gonomes. Similarly, rescue and replication of rAAV genomes occurred when rAAV vector plasmids were transfected into cells followed by HSV-RC/KOS infection and when two rAAV proviral cell lines were infected with HSV-RC/KOS or HSV-RC/d27. Production of infectious rAAV by rescue from two rAAV proviral cell lines has also been achieved with HSV-RC/KOS and HSV-RC/d27. The particle titer of rAAV produced with HSV-RC/d27 is equal to that achieved by supplying rep and cap by transfection followed by adenovirus superinfection. Importantly, no detectable wild-type AAV-2 is generated with this approach. These results demonstrate that an HSV-1 amplicon expressing the AAV-2 genes rep and cap along with HSV-1 helper functions supports the replication and packaging of rAAV vectors in a scaleable process.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science