Iatrogenic adverse events in clinical trials of retroviral vector-mediated gene-corrected cells have prioritized the urgent need for more comprehensive and stringent assessment of potentially genotoxic off-target alterations and the biosafety of cells intended for therapeutic applications. Genome editing tools such as zinc finger nucleases (ZFNs), transcription activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) and clustered regularly interspaced palindromic repeats (CRISPR)-Cas9 nuclease systems are being investigated as safer and efficient alternatives for site-directed genome modification.
Kon Oi Lan
Costly coagulation factor VIII (FVIII) replacement therapy is a barrier to optimal clinical management of hemophilia A. Therapy using FVIII-secreting autologous primary cells is potentially efficacious and more affordable. Zinc finger nucleases (ZFN) mediate transgene integration into the AAVS1 locus but comprehensive evaluation of off-target genome effects is currently lacking. In light of serious adverse effects in clinical trials which employed genome-integrating viral vectors, this study evaluated potential genotoxicity of ZFN-mediated transgenesis using different techniques.