Delivery of viral vectors to tumor cells: Extracellular transport, systemic distribution, and strategies for improvement

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It is a challenge to deliver therapeutic genes to tumor cells using viral vectors because (i) the size of these vectors are close to or larger than the space between fibers in extracellular matrix and (ii) viral proteins are potentially toxic in normal tissues. In general, gene delivery is hindered by various physiological barriers to virus transport from the site of injection to the nucleus of tumor cells and is limited by normal tissue tolerance of toxicity determined by local concentrations of transgene products and viral proteins. To illustrate the obstacles encountered in the delivery and yet limit the scope of discussion, this review focuses only on extracellular transport in solid tumors and distribution of viral vectors in normal organs after they are injected intravenously or intratumorally. This review also discusses current strategies for improving intratumoral transport and specificity of viral vectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)114-127
Number of pages14
JournalAnnals of Biomedical Engineering
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2006


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