Safety of a single aerosol administration of escalating doses of the cationic lipid GL-67/DOPE/DMPE-PEG5000 formulation to the lungs of normal volunteers

Gene Ther. 1997 Sep;4(9):937-42. doi: 10.1038/


Several groups are assessing the use of cationic lipids for respiratory gene therapy. To date no human data are available regarding the safety of intra-pulmonary cationic lipid delivery. In preparation for a trial of pulmonary delivery of the CFTR gene, we have assessed the safety of nebulised lipid GL-67/DOPE/DMPE-PEG5000 (GL-67A), the cationic lipid formulation to be used in this study. Fifteen healthy volunteers were given incremental doses of GL-67A via a Pari LC Jet nebuliser; three volunteers in each of five dosing cohorts with a week interval between cohorts. Markers of safety included clinical assessment, measurement of lung function, chest CT scan, serological testing and analysis of induced sputum. Measurements were taken before administration and at intervals up to 21 days thereafter. No adverse clinical events were seen or any statistically significant changes in spirometry or gas transfer. There were no clinically significant changes in any of the blood parameters and no CT changes were seen. Comparisons of the cellular subpopulations (neutrophils, eosinophils, lymphocytes and macrophages) in induced sputum showed no significant alterations following administration of the GL-67A. This study suggests that a single application of aerosol formulation of GL-67A does not result in clinically detectable changes when given by nebulisation into the lungs of normal volunteers and provides an indication of a lipid dose tolerated in man.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aerosols
  • Cations
  • Cystic Fibrosis / therapy
  • Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator / genetics*
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Female
  • Gene Transfer Techniques*
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Lipids / administration & dosage*
  • Lipids / therapeutic use
  • Lung / drug effects*
  • Male


  • Aerosols
  • CFTR protein, human
  • Cations
  • Lipids
  • Cystic Fibrosis Transmembrane Conductance Regulator