What do I need to consider when selecting a viral vector candidate?

Both the innate properties of the virus and the experimental parameters need to be taken into account when selecting a virus to use as a vector.1 How big of an insert can the viral genome accommodate? Can sufficient quantities of the virus be produced within the experimental timeframe? Is the transgene expression transient or stable? What is the virus’s tropism? Is the virus immunogenic, pyrogenic, and/or pathogenic? Is it reproduction-capable? Will the virus mutate into a more virulent form, and will this present a hazard to either the experimental models/specimens or the researchers who produce and handle the vector? For a broad look into viral vectors visit our resource center here.

1. D. Bouard, et al., “Viral vectors: from virology to transgene expression,” Br J Pharmacol 157(2): 153-165, 2009.