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Replication-defective adenovirus vector without both E1 and E3 is one of the most popular tools in transgenic therapies. However, more attention should be paid to adenovirus vectors mediated-gene modified study on endothelial cells (ECs). To verify the possible danger in that process, we explored the effect of adenovirus on ECs in this study. By using western blot analysis, we showed that the level of both CD40 and CD40L on human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) were upregraduated by adenovirus vector infection at 100 multiplicity of infection (MOI). The activation of ECs induced by adenovirus vector infection at MOI 100 can be partly inhibited by a blockade of CD40/CD40L interactions by using the recombinant adenovirus Ad-sCD40LIg or an anti-CD40L monoclonal antibody (mAb) in vitro. On ECs, blockade of CD40/CD40L decreased the expression of IL (interleukin)-6, IL-8 and intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM) in adenovirus vector-induced cells. In electrophoretic mobility shift assay (EMSA), both Ad-sCD40LIg and anti-CD40L mAb can attenuate the activity of NF-kappaB (NF-κB) pathway contributing to the activation of ECs, which indicated that CD40-CD40L interactions played significant role in the activation of ECs induced by adenovirus vectors via an NF-κB pathway. Our study provide evidences for a supplementary mechanism of the ECs activation induced by adenovirus vector infection and suggests that CD40-CD40L interactions partly participate in the ECs activation induced by adenovirus vectors in an NF-κB-dependent manner.
Key words: Adenovirus vector, CD40, CD40L, endothelial cells, NF-kappaB.