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J Vet Sci 2018; 19(3): 384-392  https://doi.org/10.4142/jvs.2018.19.3.384
Analysis of swine leukocyte antigen class I gene profiles and porcine endogenous retrovirus viremia level in a transgenic porcine herd inbred for xenotransplantation research
Daria Matczyńska1,*, Daniel Sypniewski1, Sabina Gałka1, Dagna Sołtysik1, Tomasz Loch1, Ewa Nowak1, Zdzisław Smorąg2, Ilona Bednarek1
1Department of Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering, School of Pharmacy with the Division of Laboratory Medicine in Sosnowiec, Medical University of Silesia in Katowice, 41-200 Sosnowiec, Poland
2Department of Animal Reproduction Biotechnology, National Research Institute of Animal Production, 32-083 Balice, Poland
Correspondence to: Tel: +48-32-364-1274; Fax: +48-32-364-1276; E-mail: dmatczynska@sum.edu.pl
Received: August 3, 2017; Revised: December 29, 2017; Accepted: January 20, 2018; Published online: May 31, 2018.
Molecular characterization of swine leukocyte antigen (SLA) genes is important for elucidating the immune responses between swine-donor and human-recipient in xenotransplantation. Examination of associations between alleles of SLA class I genes, type of pig genetic modification, porcine endogenous retrovirus (PERV) viral titer, and PERV subtypes may shed light on the nature of xenograft acceptance or rejection and the safety of xenotransplantation. No significant difference in PERV gag RNA level between transgenic and non-transgenic pigs was noted; likewise, the type of applied transgene had no impact on PERV viremia. SLA-1 gene profile type may correspond with PERV level in blood and thereby influence infectiveness. Screening of pigs should provide selection of animals with low PERV expression and exclusion of specimens with PERV-C in the genome due to possible recombination between A and C subtypes, which may lead to autoinfection. Presence of PERV-C integrated in the genome was detected in 31.25% of specimens, but statistically significant increased viremia in specimens with PERV-C was not observed. There is a need for multidirectional molecular characterization (SLA typing, viremia estimation, and PERV subtype screening) of animals intended for xenotransplantation research in the interest of xeno-recipient safety.
Keywords: MHC class II genes, Retroviridae, heterologous transplantation, infection, viremia

© 2018 The Korean Society of Veterinary Science.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.