Engineered lentivirus-derived nanoparticles (LVNPs) for delivery of CRISPR/Cas ribonucleoprotein complexes supporting base editing, prime editing and in vivo gene modification

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Abstract

Implementation of therapeutic in vivo gene editing using CRISPR/Cas relies on potent delivery of gene editing tools. Administration of ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes consisting of Cas protein and single guide RNA (sgRNA) offers short-lived editing activity and safety advantages over conventional viral and non-viral gene and RNA delivery approaches. By engineering lentivirus-derived nanoparticles (LVNPs) to facilitate RNP delivery, we demonstrate effective administration of SpCas9 as well as SpCas9-derived base and prime editors (BE/PE) leading to gene editing in recipient cells. Unique Gag/GagPol protein fusion strategies facilitate RNP packaging in LVNPs, and refinement of LVNP stoichiometry supports optimized LVNP yield and incorporation of therapeutic payload. We demonstrate near instantaneous target DNA cleavage and complete RNP turnover within 4 days. As a result, LVNPs provide high on-target DNA cleavage and lower levels of off-target cleavage activity compared to standard RNP nucleofection in cultured cells. LVNPs accommodate BE/sgRNA and PE/epegRNA RNPs leading to base editing with reduced bystander editing and prime editing without detectable indel formation. Notably, in the mouse eye, we provide the first proof-of-concept for LVNP-directed in vivo gene disruption. Our findings establish LVNPs as promising vehicles for delivery of RNPs facilitating donor-free base and prime editing without formation of double-stranded DNA breaks.

Original languageEnglish
JournalNucleic Acids Research
Volume51
Issue18
Pages (from-to)10059-10074
Number of pages16
ISSN0305-1048
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023

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