Molecular Therapy - Nucleic Acids
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The blood-brain barrier controls the passage of molecules from the blood into the central nervous system (CNS) and is a major challenge for treatment of neurological diseases. Metachromatic leukodystrophy is a neurodegenerative lysosomal storage disease caused by loss of arylsulfatase A (ARSA) activity. Gene therapy via intraventricular injection of a lentiviral vector is a potential approach to rapidly and permanently deliver therapeutic levels of ARSA to the CNS. We present the distribution of integration sites of a lentiviral vector encoding human ARSA (LV-ARSA) in murine brain choroid plexus and ependymal cells, administered via a single intracranial injection into the CNS. LV-ARSA did not exhibit a strong preference for integration in or near actively transcribed genes, but exhibited a strong preference for integration in or near satellite DNA. We identified several genomic hotspots for LV-ARSA integration and identified a consensus target site sequence characterized by two G-quadruplexforming motifs flanking the integration site. In addition, our analysis identified several other non-B DNA motifs as new factors that potentially influence lentivirus integration, including human immunodeficiency virus type-1 in human cells. Together, our data demonstrate a clinically favorable integration site profile in the murine brain and identify non-B DNA as a potential new host factor that influences lentiviral integration in murine and human cells. © 2014 The American Society of Gene & Cell Therapy.