Nucleoporation of dendritic cells: efficient gene transfer by electroporation into human monocyte-derived dendritic cells

Lenz P, Bacot SM, Frazier-Jessen MR and Feldman GM
Source: FEBS Lett
Publication Date: (2003)
Issue: 538(1-3): 149-154
Research Area:
Immunotherapy / Hematology
Cells used in publication:
Dendritic cell (NHDC), human
Species: human
Tissue Origin: blood
Dendritic cells (DCs) are ideal accessory cells in the developing field of gene therapy. Although viral transfection of DCs has become widespread, non-viral transfection of DCs has shown disappointing results. Recently, a new technique for transfecting primary cells has become available -- the Amaxa Nucleofector. Here, we describe the use of this device in the successful non-viral transfection of human monocyte-derived DCs. Using enhanced green fluorescent protein as a reporter gene DCs were transfectable with efficiencies approaching 60%, remaining responsive to lipopolysaccharide-stimulated cytokine production in short-term experiments (though long-term functional assays were hampered by loss of viability). Although these data demonstrate the ease and efficiency with which human monocyte-derived DCs can now be non-virally transfected, they also suggest the limitations of this technology due to the gradual loss of cell viability. The potential use of this system in the development of DC-based cell and gene therapies will be hampered until cell viability can be maintained.