Induced pluripotent stem cells and severe combined immunodeficiency: merely disease modeling or potentially a novel cure?

Pediatr Res. 2012 Apr;71(4 Pt 2):427-32. doi: 10.1038/pr.2011.65. Epub 2012 Feb 8.


For most, but not all, types of severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) the underlying molecular defects are known, in principle allowing the cure of affected children via gene therapy. Typically such approaches have used autologous hematopoietic stem cells modified to express a therapeutic gene via γ-retroviral vectors. Insertional mutagenesis has emerged as a significant risk for successful application of this type of gene therapy. Therefore, lentiviral vectors with a self-inactivating design have been developed. Recent advances in stem cell technology using induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) allow an entire different approach to gene therapy for SCID and other genetic disorders, namely by correction of the affected gene in patient-specific iPSCs followed by hematopoietic differentiation. Here, we review these recent advances in the field from an efficacy and safety point of view.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Genetic Vectors / genetics
  • Humans
  • Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells / transplantation*
  • Models, Biological*
  • Mutagenesis, Insertional
  • Pediatrics / methods*
  • Pediatrics / trends
  • Severe Combined Immunodeficiency / genetics*
  • Severe Combined Immunodeficiency / therapy*
  • Stem Cell Transplantation / methods*