UNIT 16.21 Overview of the HIV-1 Lentiviral Vector System

  1. Ali Ramezani1,
  2. Robert G. Hawley1,2

Published Online: 1 NOV 2002

DOI: 10.1002/0471142727.mb1621s60

Current Protocols in Molecular Biology

Current Protocols in Molecular Biology

How to Cite

Ramezani, A. and Hawley, R. G. 2002. Overview of the HIV-1 Lentiviral Vector System. Current Protocols in Molecular Biology. 60:III:16.21:16.21.1–16.21.15.

Author Information

  1. 1

    American Red Cross, Rockville, Maryland

  2. 2

    The George Washington University, Washington, D.C.

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 NOV 2002
  2. Published Print: OCT 2002


Replication-defective oncoretroviral vectors have been the most widely used vehicles for gene-transfer studies because of their capacity to efficiently introduce and stably express transgenes in mammalian cells. A limitation of oncoretroviral vectors is that cell division is required for proviral integration into the host genome. By comparison, lentiviruses such as human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) have evolved a nuclear-import machinery that allows them to infect nondividing as well as dividing cells. This unique property has led to the development of lentiviral vectors for gene delivery to a variety of nondividing or slowly dividing cells including neurons and glial cells of the central nervous system and others. This unit is intended to provide an overview of HIV-1 molecular biology and an introduction to successive generations of HIV-1-based lentiviral vectors.