Adeno-associated virus (AAV)-6, 8, and 9 are promising gene-delivery vectors for testing novel Duchenne muscular dystrophy gene therapy in the canine model. Humoral immunity greatly influences in vivo AAV transduction. However, neutralizing antibodies to AAV-6, 8, and 9 have not been systemically examined in normal and dystrophic dogs. To gain information on the seroprevalence of antibodies to AAV-6, 8, and 9, we measured neutralizing antibody titers using an in vitro transduction inhibition assay. We examined 72 naive serum samples and 26 serum samples obtained from dogs that had received AAV gene transfer. Our data demonstrated that AAV-6 neutralizing antibody was the most prevalent antibody in dogs irrespective of age, gender, disease status (dystrophic or not), and prior parvovirus vaccination history. Surprisingly, high-level anti-AAV-6 antibody was detected at birth in newborn puppies. Further, a robust antibody response was induced in affected, but not normal newborn dogs following systemic AAV gene transfer. Taken together, our data have provided an important baseline on the seroprevalence of AAV-6, 8, and 9 neutralizing antibodies in normal and Duchenne muscular dystrophy dogs. These results will help guide translational AAV gene-therapy studies in dog models of muscular dystrophy.
Shin and colleagues have conducted a large-scale survey on seroprevalence of AAV-6, -8, and -9 neutralizing antibodies in normal, carrier, and dystrophin-deficient dogs. Their data demonstrate that AAV-6 neutralizing antibody is the most prevalent antibody in dogs irrespective of age, sex, disease status (dystrophic or not), and prior parvovirus vaccination history. High-level anti-AAV-6 antibody is detected as early as birth in newborn puppies. The authors also show that a robust antibody response is induced in affected, but not normal, newborn dogs after systemic AAV gene transfer.