Adeno-associated viruses (AAVs) are small viruses which have a genome consisting of a small-single stranded DNA. AAVs are classified as non-enveloped viruses since their protein shell (capsid) does not have an external bilipid layer. AAVs cannot replicate on their own but instead require the presence of a helper virus, such as adenovirus, herpesvirus, human papillomavirus, and vaccinia virus. AAVs are usually non-integrating, meaning the DNA they carry doesn’t typically insert itself into the DNA of the host cell. AAVs can infect humans, but are not associated with any known disease or illness in humans.
AAVs are the basis of adeno-associated virus gene therapy.
Human Immune Responses to Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) Vectors [2020 published article]
Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV) as a Vector for Gene Therapy [2017 published article]
American Society of Gene and Cell Therapy: Vector 101