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Contact: Julia Evangelou Strait
Washington University School of Medicine

Gene Therapy Method Targets Tumor Blood Vessels

Caption: Embargoed until 5 p.m. ET Monday, Dec. 23, 2013. Working in mice, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis report developing a gene delivery method long sought in the field of gene therapy: a deactivated virus carrying a gene of interest that can be injected into the bloodstream and make its way to the right cells. The scientists designed a viral vector that homes in on the abnormal blood vessels of tumors, opening up new therapeutic possibilities for gene therapy against cancer and other conditions that involve abnormal vasculature. In one case, the primary kidney tumor spread to an ovary. The vectors gathering in the metastatic tumor vessels glow green, above. The red staining shows the normal blood vessels of the ovary.

Credit: Curiel, Arbeit

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