Baculovirus has been widely used as a gene expression tool for over 30 years based on its ability to express high levels of proteins in insect cells. Along with the progress of baculovirus research, recombinant baculoviruses have been demonstrated to be capable of entering into various mammalian cells and of expressing foreign genes under the control of mammalian promoters without any viral replication; therefore, they have been applied for gene delivery into mammalian cells. The advantages of the baculovirus gene expression system are its high transgene capacity; its enabling of both easy construction of recombinant virus with a bacmid system and posttranslational modification with a eukaryotic system such as glycosylation; and, especially in mammalian cells, its replication-defect property—namely, the absence of primary antibody and low cytotoxicity compared to mammalian virus-derived vectors. Moreover, baculovirus has also been shown to stimulate the host antiviral immune responses in mammalian cells and to confer protection from lethal virus infection and progressive tumor metastasis in mice.
Figure 1. Overview of the various applications of the baculovirus expression system.
Currently, preclinical animal and ex vivo studies using human cells have demonstrated the feasibility of baculovirus-mediated gene transfer in several gene therapy applications including vaccination, tissue engineering/regenerative medicine, and cancer therapy. Baculovirus vectors have been indicated to be effective as vaccine carriers in mice and nonhuman primates, through expression of antigens and/or surface display of exogenous peptides fused with baculovirus envelop proteins, to induce both humoral and cellular immune responses for prevention or treatment of human/animal infectious diseases including influenza, malaria, and rabies. Recent findings of bone healing with adipose-derived stem cells genetically modified with baculovirus vectors to express various growth factors in animal studies demonstrate the great potential of baculovirus gene therapy in tissue engineering. Baculovirus transduction-based approaches have also been explored for cancer treatment, involving the expression of suicide genes, tumor suppressors, or other antitumor genes in target tumor cells.
To use baculovirus vectors for human gene therapy, the development of robust, reliable, and scalable production processes for the vectors is crucial. For over a decade, QVirus™ Platform at Creative Biogene has always optimized our baculovirus production systems. We can offer a comprehensive portfolio of products and services for the efficient design, development, manufacturing and analytical testing of baculovirus vector. Moreover, various types of recombinant baculovirus product have been established in-house to facilitate your baculovirus-based gene therapy study with a reduced budget and less time. Also, we can establish the best possible protocol for your custom project and then scale up to get the highest expression of your target protein.
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3. Van Oers M M, et al. Thirty years of baculovirus-insect cell protein expression: from dark horse to mainstream technology. Journal of General Virology, 2015, 96(Pt_1):6-23.