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    ABSTRACT: Because the mammary parenchyma is accessible from the exterior of an animal through the mammary duct, adenovirus transduction holds promise for the short-term delivery of genes to the mammary epithelium for both research and therapeutic purposes. To optimize the procedure and evaluate its efficacy, an adenovirus vector (human adenovirus type 5) encoding a green fluorescent protein (GFP) reporter and deleted of E1 and E3 was injected intraductally into the mouse mammary gland. We evaluated induction of inflammation (by intraductal injection of [14C]sucrose and histological examination), efficiency of transduction, and maintenance of normal function in transduced cells. We found that transduction of the total epithelium in the proximal portion of the third mammary gland varied from 7% to 25% at a dose of 2 × 106 PFU of adenovirus injected into day 17 pregnant mice. Transduction was maintained for at least 7 days with minimal inflammatory response; however, significant mastitis was observed 12 days after transduction. Adenovirus transduction could also be used in the virgin animal with little mastitis 3 days after transduction. Transduced mammary epithelial cells maintained normal morphology and function. Our results demonstrate that intraductal injection of adenovirus vectors provides a versatile and noninvasive method of investigating genes of interest in mouse mammary epithelial cells.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2003 · Journal of Virology