Short (16-mer) locked nucleic acid splice-switching oligonucleotides restore dystrophin production in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy myotubes

Abstract : Splice-switching antisense oligonucleotides (SSOs) offer great potential for RNA-targeting therapies, and two SSO drugs have been recently approved for treating Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA). Despite promising results, new developments are still needed for more efficient chemistries and delivery systems. Locked nucleic acid (LNA) is a chemically modified nucleic acid that presents several attractive properties, such as high melting temperature when bound to RNA, potent biological activity, high stability and low toxicity in vivo. Here, we designed a series of LNA-based SSOs complementary to two sequences of the human dystrophin exon 51 that are most evolutionary conserved and evaluated their ability to induce exon skipping upon transfection into myo-blasts derived from a DMD patient. We show that 16-mers with 60% of LNA modification efficiently induce exon skipping and restore synthesis of a truncated dystrophin isoform that localizes to the plasma membrane of patient-derived myotubes differentiated in culture. In sum, this study underscores the value of short LNA-modified SSOs for therapeutic applications.
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PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2017, 12 (7), pp.e0181065. 〈10.1371/journal.pone.0181065〉
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Vanessa Borges Pires, Ricardo Simões, Kamel Mamchaoui, Célia Carvalho, Maria Carmo-Fonseca. Short (16-mer) locked nucleic acid splice-switching oligonucleotides restore dystrophin production in Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy myotubes. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2017, 12 (7), pp.e0181065. 〈10.1371/journal.pone.0181065〉. 〈hal-01579784〉

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