Principal investigator: Edit I Buzás, MD, PhD, DSc
The Extracellular Vesicle Research Group of the Hungarian Center of Excellence Molecular Medicine (HCEMM aims at gaining a mechanistic insight into the importance of the association of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) and extracellular vesicles (EVs) by using genetically engineered cell lines and transgenic mice. Our main goal is to develop a novel gene therapy tool for cardiovascular diseases. The proposed system combines the advantages of viruses and the shielding effect of EVs against neutralizing antiviral antibodies and complement. The project will use the proposed gene therapy to target genes to reduce circulating LDL levels in mice. The project is expected not only to provide important basic understanding on the functional significance of the association of LDL to EVs in cardiovascular disease, but also to develop a novel gene therapy tool to normalize the high serum cholesterol levels of mice. Ultimately, the project may represent a major step towards safe and broadly available gene therapy to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.