AAV Core Unit

AAV Gene Transfer and Cell Therapy Core Facility

The Helsinki Virus (HelVi) Core is a service platform that provides generation of recombinant adeno-associated viral (rAAV) preps for academic and industrial customers in Finland as well as abroad. HelVi uses biosafety level I laboratory equipped with all necessary cell culture equipment such as laminar hoods, incubators, centrifuges and microscopes.

Contact persons: Andrey Anisimov, +3582941 25562, andrey.anisimov@helsinki.fi; Tanja Laakkonen, +3582841 25563, tanja.laakkonen@helsinki.fi; Kari Alitalo, Core director, +3582941 25511, kari.alitalo@helsinki.fi

Location: Biomedicum Helsinki, 5th floor, Haartmaninkatu 8, Meilahti Campus

Brief introduction to the technology - 5 easy steps
  1. The gene-of-interest or shRNA are cloned into the AAV plasmid vector
  2. Generation of rAAV particles carrying the gene of interest or shRNA
  3. Administration of rAAV particles into cells or experimental animals
  4. rAAV transduces host cells and releases its recombinant genome
  5. The transgenic protein or shRNA is expressed
  • Manufacturing rAAV preps from the customer’s gene-encoding plasmids. The available capacity allows the production of 3xE+11 to 3xE+12 virus genomes/ml in one purification round. The currently used serotypes are 2, 6, 8 and 9
  • Routine functional tests of the rAAV preps to characterize transduction efficiency and the ability to produce the transgenic protein in transduced host cells
  • Providing customers with control rAAV preps, immediately available upon request
  • Consulting the customers regarding rAAV vector design, tissue/cell specificity of transduction, fluorescent markers, tags, methods to increase expression level and bioavailability
  • Researcher training tailored to client needs
  • Generation of CRISPR rAAV preps for genome editing
  • Heracell 150 CO2 cell culture incubator (2 x)
  • KOJAIR cell culture hood for the viral work
  • Sorvall RC 6+ centrifuge equipped with rotors
  • A&D EK-400H scale
  • Ultracentrifuge Optima XL-80K Beckman Coulter
  • EVOS ® FL Imaging System
  • Olympus CK2 inverted bright field microscope
  • Zeiss AxioImager and Zeiss LSM780 and 880 microscopes
  • Recombinant virus production and quantification
  • Quality test for the ready viral preps
  • Optimization of AAV vectors upon request
User fees

The research infrastructure is supported by University of Helsinki (HiLIFE and Research Programs Unit) and Biocenter Finland. The prices for University of Helsinki customers (VAT 0 %) are listed below. For the other customers, the VAT is 24%.

Service Fee
Internal customers 908,54 €
BCF customers 1001,19 €
External academic customers 2059,77 €
External customers 2059,77 €
Ready AAV preps available upon request

HelVi has several ready AAV preps in storage, which can be mainly used as a negative control in vivo or in vitro. These ready AAV preps * (as listed in the Table below) can be sold in smaller amounts, reducing the price.

Transgene AAV serotype Notes
Human Serum Albumin (HSA) AAV9  
Empty vector (no transgene) AAV9  
Fc-part of mouse IgG (mFC) AAV9, AAV2 Control for Fc-fuced proteins
Luciferaasi AAV9, AAV2, AAV8  
LacZ AAV9  
Cre recombinase AAV9, AAV2, AAV8 Can be used to cut away loxP flanked DNA sequences

* For other available AAV preps, not included in the Table, please, send e-mail or call.