Huarte E, Larrea E, Hernandez-Alcoceba R, Alfaro C, Murillo O, Arina A, et al. Recombinant adenoviral vectors turn on the type I interferon system without inhibition of transgene expression and viral replication. Mol Ther 2006 Jul;14(1):129-138.
Recombinant adenovirus administration gives rise to transgene-independent effects caused by the ability of the vector to activate innate immunity mechanisms. We show that recombinant adenoviruses encoding reporter genes trigger IFN-alpha and IFN-beta transcription from both plasmacytoid and myeloid mouse dendritic cells. Interestingly, IFN-beta and IFN-alpha5 are the predominant transcribed type I IFN genes both in vitro and in vivo. In human peripheral blood leukocytes type I IFNs are induced by adenoviral vectors, with a preponderance of IFN-beta together with IFN-alpha1 and IFN-alpha5 subtypes. Accordingly, functional type I IFN is readily detected in serum samples from human cancer patients who have been treated intratumorally with a recombinant adenovirus encoding thymidine kinase. Despite inducing functional IFN-alpha release in both mice and humans, gene transfer by recombinant adenoviruses is not interfered with by type I IFNs either in vitro or in vivo. Moreover, IFN-alpha does not impair replication of wild-type adenovirus. As a consequence, cancer gene therapy strategies with defective or replicative-competent adenoviruses are not expected to be hampered by the effect of the type I IFNs induced by the vector itself. However, type I IFN might modulate antitumor and antiadenoviral immune responses and thus influence the outcome of gene immunotherapy.