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Gene transfer of drug resistance (CTX-R) genes can be used to protect the hematopoietic system from the toxicity of anticancer chemotherapy and this concept recently has been proven by overexpression of a mutant O(6)-methylguaninemethyltransferase in the hematopoietic system of glioblastoma patients treated with temozolomide. Given its protection capacity against such relevant drugs as cytosine arabinoside (ara-C), gemcitabine, decitabine, or azacytidine and the highly hematopoiesis-specific toxicity profile of several of these agents, cytidine deaminase (CDD) represents another interesting candidate CTX-R gene and our group recently has established the myeloprotective capacity of CDD gene transfer in a number of murine transplant studies. Clinically, CDD overexpression appears particularly suited to optimize treatment strategies for acute leukemias and myelodysplasias given the efficacy of ara-C (and to a lesser degree decitabine and azacytidine) in these disease entities. This article will review the current state of the art with regard to CDD gene transfer and point out potential scenarios for a clinical application of this strategy. In addition, risks and potential side effects associated with this approach as well as strategies to overcome these problems will be highlighted.


Nico Lachmann, Sebastian Brennig, Ruhi Phaltane, Michael Flasshove, Dagmar Dilloo, Thomas Moritz. Myeloprotection by cytidine deaminase gene transfer in antileukemic therapy. Neoplasia (New York, N.Y.). 2013 Mar;15(3):239-48

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PMID: 23479503

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