Researchers at Cell Genesys Inc. have created new genetransfer vectors, called "kat" vectors, which the company saidare five to 10 times more efficient at introducing genes intocells than traditional vectors. The researchers' findings arepublished in this month's issue of Blood, the journal of theAmerican Society of Hematology.

Stephen Sherwin, president and chief executive officer of theFoster City, Calif., company explained that the efficiency oftransduction refers to the percentage of cells that aregenetically modified by the vectors. He said traditional vectorsmodify 1-5 percent of cells while kat vectors modify 25-50percent.

Sherwin told BioWorld that Cell Genesys (NASDAQ:CEGE) isusing related technology in its program to develop anti-HIV Tcells. He said these CD8 killer T cells are genetically modifiedthrough the introduction of universal receptor genes withspecificity for HIV. The introduction of these genes creates CD8cells that have the ability to recognize and kill HIV-infectedcells. -- Brenda Sandburg

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.