University of Washington
K-236A Health Sciences Building
Medical Genetics, Box 357720
Seattle, WA 98109
Phone: (206) 616-4562
FAX: (206) 616-8298
Dr. Russell’s research program focuses on the development of improved methods for transducing mammalian cells with viral vectors. The technologies being developed will find applications in somatic cell genetics, the engineering of mutant animals, and gene therapy. Transduction by adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors is an active area of investigation, including the cloning of new AAV serotypes and the development of vectors based on them, designing improved methods for vector production, testing of vectors in pre-clinical animal disease models, and studies on the molecular mechanisms of AAV-mediated transduction. A major focus of the lab at present is the development of homologous gene targeting strategies based on AAV vectors, with the ultimate goal of therapeutic gene correction.
Vectors based on foamy viruses (an alternative retroviral vector system) are also under investigation. Foamy virus vectors offer many possible advantages, including improved transduction of non-dividing cells, wide host range, and large packaging capacity. In addition to studies on the basic biology of foamy viruses, the potential of foamy virus vectors for gene therapy applications is being explored, including the development of improved vector production methods, and the testing of vectors in pre-clinical animal models. Recent findings from the laboratory have shown that foamy virus vectors can efficiently transduce hematopoietic stem cells in ex vivo strategies, and also other cell types after in vivo administration.
Investigator: Dr. Russell is a Professor in the Department of Medicine (Hematology) and an Investigator of the Markey Molecular Medicine Center.