Double modification of adenovirus fiber with RGD and polylysine motifs improves coxsackievirus-adenovirus receptor-independent gene transfer efficiency

Hum Gene Ther. 2002 Sep 1;13(13):1647-53. doi: 10.1089/10430340260201734.


Adenoviral vectors based on serotype 5 (Ad5) have been widely used to deliver therapeutic genes to different organs and tissues. However, many tissues are poorly infected with Ad5 because of low-level expression of its primary receptor, coxsackievirus-adenovirus receptor (CAR). Two motifs, RGD and polylysine (pK7), have been shown to enhance Ad5 infection via CAR-independent pathways when incorporated into fiber separately. Because the two motifs bind to different cell surface proteins (RGD motif binds to integrins, and pK7 binds to heparan sulfate-containing receptors), we hypothesized that the two motifs function additively to improve gene transfer efficiency. In this study, we sought to improve infectivity of Ad5 by incorporating both RGD and pK7 motifs into fiber. We created an Ad5 vector containing an RGD motif in the HI loop and a pK7 motif at the C terminus of fiber (Ad5.RGD.pK7). Compared with unmodified and singly modified Ad5 vectors Ad5.RGD and Ad5.pK7, the doubly modified Ad5 demonstrated the highest infectivity in both CAR-positive and CAR-negative cells. The enhanced infectivity appeared to be mediated by additive effects of the two motifs. More importantly, Ad5.RGD.pK7 lost the natural CAR-dependent pathway while employing novel targeting mechanisms. This strategy thus may be used to overcome CAR deficiency and to achieve vector retargeting.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adenoviridae / genetics*
  • Coxsackie and Adenovirus Receptor-Like Membrane Protein
  • Gene Transfer Techniques*
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Oligopeptides / genetics*
  • Polylysine / genetics*
  • Receptors, Virus / physiology
  • Rhabdomyosarcoma, Embryonal


  • CLMP protein, human
  • Coxsackie and Adenovirus Receptor-Like Membrane Protein
  • Oligopeptides
  • Receptors, Virus
  • Polylysine
  • arginyl-glycyl-aspartic acid