Improved Escherichia coli bactofection and cytotoxicity by heterologous expression of bacteriophage phiX174 lysis gene E
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Bacterial vectors are a class of non-viral gene therapy vehicles that are noted for their easy preparation, available modification strategies, and high transfection efficiency. However, the potential cytotoxicity and immunogenicity associated with the in vivo administration of these vectors has significantly hindered clinical translation. Thus, attenuative methods are being developed to reduce undesired outcomes while maintaining transfection efficacy. With this stated, the purpose of this study was the development of biologically attenuated bacterial vectors for gene delivery purposes. Specifically, a gene delivery-adept Escherichia coli strain was further engineered to express the lethal lysis gene E (LyE) from bacteriophage. Expression of LyE resulted in considerable improvements to gene delivery and cell viability. The combined features of this new vector provide a promising platform for future application in genetic vaccination. Overall, the approach presented provides not only effective but economic way to enhance bacterial gene delivery because chemical methods are expensive and not feasible in an industrial field.