Sustained transgene expression from sleeping beauty DNA transposons containing a core fragment of the HNRPA2B1-CBX3 ubiquitous chromatin opening element (UCOE)

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BACKGROUND: DNA transposon-based vectors are effective nonviral tools for gene therapy and genetic engineering of cells. However, promoter DNA methylation and a near-random integration profile, which can result in transgene integration into heterochromatin, renders such vectors vulnerable to transcriptional repression. Therefore, to secure persistent transgene expression it may be necessary to protect transposon-embedded transgenes with anti-transcriptional silencing elements.

RESULTS: We compare four different protective strategies in CHO-K1 cells. Our findings show robust protection from silencing of transgene cassettes mediated by the ubiquitous chromatin-opening element (UCOE) derived from the HNRPA2B1-CBX3 locus. Using a bioinformatic approach, we define a shorter HNRPA2B1-CBX3 UCOE core fragment and demonstrate that this can robustly maintain transgene expression after extended passaging of CHO-K1 cells carrying DNA transposon vectors equipped with this protective feature.

CONCLUSIONS: Our findings contribute to the understanding of the mechanism of HNRPA2B1-CBX3 UCOE-based transgene protection and support the use of a correctly oriented core fragment of this UCOE for DNA transposon vector-based production of recombinant proteins in CHO-K1 cells.

Original languageEnglish
Article number75
JournalBMC Biotechnology
Publication statusPublished - 9 Nov 2019

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