Improved distribution of small molecules and viral vectors in the murine brain using a hollow fiber catheter

Seung Uk Oh, Rick M Odland, Scott R. Wilson, Kurt M. Kroeger, Chunyan Liu, Pedro R. Lowenstein, Maria G. Castro, Walter A. Hall, John R. Ohlfest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

59 Scopus citations


Object. A hollow fiber catheter was developed to improve the distribution of drugs administered via direct infusion into the central nervous system (CNS). It is a porous catheter that significantly increases the surface area of brain tissue into which a drug is infused. Methods. Dye was infused into the mouse brain through convection-enhanced delivery (CED) using a 28-gauge needle compared with a 3-mm-long hollow fiber catheter. To determine whether a hollow fiber catheter could increase the distribution of gene therapy vectors, a recombinant adenovirus expressing the firefly luciferase reporter was injected into the mouse striatum. Gene expression was monitored using in vivo bioluminescent imaging. To assess the distribution of gene transfer, an adenovirus expressing green fluorescent protein was injected into the striatum using a hollow fiber catheter or a needle. Results. Hollow fiber catheter-mediated infusion increased the volume of brain tissue labeled with dye by 2.7 times relative to needle-mediated infusion. In vivo imaging revealed that catheter-mediated infusion of adenovirus resulted in gene expression that was 10 times greater than that mediated by a needle. The catheter appreciably increased the area of brain transduced with adenovirus relative to a needle, affecting a significant portion of the injected hemisphere. Conclusions. The miniature hollow fiber catheter used in this study significantly increased the distribution of dye and adenoviral-mediated gene transfer in the mouse brain compared with the levels reached using a 28-gauge needle. Compared with standard single-port clinical catheters, the hollow fiber catheter has the advantage of millions of nanoscale pores to increase surface area and bulk flow in the CNS. Extending the scale of the hollow fiber catheter for the large mammalian brain shows promise in increasing the distribution and efficacy of gene therapy and drug therapy using CED.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)568-577
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of neurosurgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2007


  • Adenovirus
  • Catheter
  • Convection-enhanced delivery
  • Gene therapy
  • Glioma
  • In vivo imaging
  • Mouse

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