Nanoparticles containing the mouse opsin promoter and wild-type mouse Rds gene were injected subretinally into mice carrying a haploinsufficiency mutation in the retinal degeneration slow (rds+/–) gene at postnatal day (P)5 and 22. Control mice were either injected with saline, injected with uncompacted naked plasmid DNA carrying the Rds gene, or remained untreated. Rds mRNA levels peaked at postinjection day 2 to 7 (PI-2 to PI-7) for P5 injections, stabilized at levels 2-fold higher than in uninjected controls for both P5 and P22 injections, and remained elevated at the latest time point examined (PI-120). Rod function (measured by electroretinography) showed modest but statistically significant improvement compared with controls after both P5 and P22 injections. Cone function in nanoparticle-injected eyes reached wild-type levels for both ages of injections, indicating full prevention of cone degeneration.
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