Research Grade Viral Vector Packaging Services

Our team of scientific experts will work with you to ensure that you receive AAV, lentivirus, retrovirus, and adenovirus packaging services that are customized to your research at every stage, tailored to your needs. Viruses can be packaged using our transfer vectors, custom designed vectors, or your own vectors. We also offer a complete package of quality control testing, including silver staining, AAV empty/full ratio, endotoxin level, sterility, mycoplasma, etc.

  • AAV Packaging Services

    Below is a list of the AAV packaging services that we provide. We are also happy to customize your order if a different volume, titer, or purification is needed.

    We use a validated assay for measuring physical titer (genome copies) for all AAV packaging services using qPCR with primers targeting the ITRs present in the viral genome and quantified by comparison to a standard curve of a plasmid sample of known concentration.

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      AAV Packaging Services Guaranteed Titer* Price Standard Timeline
    Crude (for in vitro) Small-scale AAV packaging 5x1012GC/mL, 500 µL ( 2 x 250 µL) $685 2-3 Weeks
    Purified (for in vivo) Large-scale AAV packaging - 0.5 mL 1013GC/mL, 500 µL (2 x 250 µL)
    5x1012GC/mL for AAV2, AAV6**
    $1,915 3-4 Weeks
    Large-scale AAV packaging - 1 mL 1013GC/mL, 1 mL (4 x 250 µL)
    5x1012GC/mL for AAV2, AAV6**
    $3,050 3-4 Weeks
    Preclinical AAV packaging Total Viral Titer 1.00x1014GC Please inquire for price and estimated timeline
    Total Viral Titer 1.00x1015GC
    Total Viral Titer 1.00x1016GC
    Clinical-grade CGMP AAV production Total yield up to 1017 GC Please see our AAV CGMP Production page

    GC = genome copies (physical titer) *The indicated titers are guaranteed except when the insert exceeds the packaging capacity (4.7 kb) or if you choose to supply your own modified rep/cap plasmid or helper plasmid. Please see the FAQ section at the bottom of this page for more information. †AAV packaging of high total viral titer >1.00x1014 GC will be priced by production volume, viral titer is not guaranteed.

    **Note - For AAV2 and AAV6, due to low yields of these two serotypes, the guaranteed titer using our typical production procedure is 5x1012 GC/mL. If 1x1013 GC/mL is needed, please request a quote.

  • Lentivirus Packaging Services

    Below is a list of the lentivirus packaging services that we provide. We are also happy to customize your order, but please be aware that the prices and delivery times will vary based on the complexity of the order.

    We use a validated assay for measuring viral titer for all lentivirus packaging services. Tittering is performed using RT-qPCR with primers targeting the long-inverted terminal repeat (LTR) present in the viral genome and quantified by comparison to a standard curve of a plasmid sample of known concentration. We then use a formula to convert to functional titer (IFU/mL). If you would like any additional quality control services, including endotoxin level, sterility, or mycoplasma testing, we will be more than happy to help you.

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      Lentivirus Packaging Services Guaranteed Titer* Price Standard Timeline
    Crude (for in vitro) Cell-culture grade lentivirus packaging 1x107 IFU/mL, 200µL (2 x 100µL) $595 2 Weeks
    Ultracentrifiguration purified
    (for in vitro or in vivo)
    Small-scale lentivirus packaging 2x108 IFU/mL, 100 µL (4 x 25 uL) $1,295 2-3 Weeks
    Large-scale lentivirus packaging 109 IFU/mL, 200 µL (8 x 25 uL) $2,250 2-3 Weeks
    Preclinical lentivirus packaging Total yield up to 1012 IFU Please inquire for price and estimated timeline
    Clinical-grade CGMP lentivirus production Total yield up to 1012 IFU Please see our Lentivirus CGMP Production page

    IFU = infectious units

    *Note: The indicated titers are not guaranteed if the fragment between the LTRs exceeds 6.0 kb. Please see the FAQ section at the bottom of this page for more information on lentivirus packaging.

  • Adenovirus Packaging Services

    Below is a list of the adenovirus packaging services that we provide. We are also happy to customize your order if a different volume, titer, or purification is needed.

    We use a validated assay for measuring physical titer (viral particles) for all adenovirus packaging services using qPCR with primers targeting an adenovirus-specific gene and quantified by comparison to a standard curve of a plasmid sample of known concentration.

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      Adenovirus Services Guaranteed Titer* Price Standard Timeline
      Adenovirus recombination N/A $550 2 Weeks
    Adenovirus primary stock generation N/A $690 4 Weeks
    Amplification only (for in vitro) Small-scale adenovirus packaging 1010 VP/mL, 500 µL $650 2 Weeks
    Amplification and Purification (for in vivo) Large-scale adenovirus packaging 1012 VP/mL, 500 µL $1,590 4 Weeks
    Preclinical adenovirus packaging Total yield up to 1016 VP Please inquire for price and estimated timeline
    Clinical-grade CGMP adenovirus production Total yield up to 1015 VP Please see our Adenovirus CGMP Production page

    VP = viral particles (physical titer)

    *Note: The indicated titers are guaranteed except when the insert exceeds the packaging capacity (7.5 kb). Please see the FAQ section at the bottom of this page for more information on adenovirus packaging.

  • Custom Viral Vector Design

    We can help you with viral vector production starting from custom vector design.  Our highly experienced scientists are ready to tackle difficult cloning projects, including clones with high GC content or highly repetitive sequences. Please contact us with your project details and our team will get in touch as soon as possible with an estimated price and projected turnaround time.

    Learn more

    Comparison of Viral Vectors

    Characteristic AAV Adenovirus Lentivirus
    Genome 4.8 kb (ssDNA) 36 kb (dsDNA) 9 kb (ssRNA)
    Packaging capacity 4.7 kb 7.5 kb 9 kb
    Infection Most dividing and non-dividing cells Most dividing and non-dividing cells Most dividing and non-dividing cells
    Transduction efficiency Moderate High Moderate
    Integration Non-integrating Non-integrating Integrating
    Expression Transient or stable Transient Stable
    Immunogenicity Very low High Low
    Biosafety BSL-1 BSL-2 BSL-2

    VP = viral particles (physical titer)

    *Note: The indicated titers are guaranteed except when the insert exceeds the packaging capacity (7.5 kb). Please see the FAQ section at the bottom of this page for more information on adenovirus packaging.

Talk to an expert

In addition to our viral vector packaging services, we also offer catalog viral vector products, including control viruses, AAV reference materials, etc. Learn more about viral vector products.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Viral Vector Packaging

  • Why Choose AAV?

    Although AAV has a high prevalence in humans, it is non-pathogenic and elicits a very mild immune response. Wild-type AAV is able to integrate into the host genome at the AAVS1 loci, however, recombinant AAV lacks two essential genes for viral integration and replication. As a result, recombinant AAV remains primarily episomal and can persist in non-dividing cells for long periods of time. Due to these characteristics, along with the ability to target specific tissue types, recombinant AAV has become one of the main viral vectors used for research and gene therapy applications. Note: We offer only recombinant AAV products and services. We do not work with or sell wild-type AAV.

    Advantages of using AAV:

    • Very low immunogenicity
    • Tissue specific targeting by choice of serotype
    • Non-integrating
    • Potential for long-term gene expression
  • Why choose lentivirus?

    Lentiviruses are a subgroup of retroviruses: viruses that use viral reverse transcriptase to produce DNA from their RNA genomes before integrating into the host genome. Unlike other retroviruses, lentiviruses have the ability to infect both dividing and non-dividing cells. To increase safety, the components for virus replication are divided across multiple plasmids during recombinant lentivirus production. Lentivirus is a particularly useful tool for generating stable cell lines expressing your sequence of interest or for gene therapy applications such as CAR-T.

    Advantages of using lentivirus:

    • Very efficient gene delivery tool
    • Integrates into host genome
    • Infects both dividing and non-dividing cells
    • Large packaging capacity (~9 kb)
    • Can be used to make stable cell lines
  • Why choose adenovirus?

    Recombinant adenoviruses can cause a wide range of illnesses in humans, such as respiratory tract infections. To make adenovirus an effective and safe tool for gene delivery, two genes involved in viral replication and modulating host immune response are deleted. Once inside the cell, recombinant adenovirus remains episomal and does not integrate into the host genome. Adenovirus is a popular choice for gene delivery applications primarily because of its large packaging capacity, high transgene expression, and ability to infect most cell types.

    Advantages of adenovirus:

    • Large packaging capacity (~7.5 kb)
    • High levels of expression that can often be observed within 24 hours
    • Does not integrate into host genome
    • Infects most cell types with nearly 100% efficiency
  • Which AAV serotype should I use?

    The tissue specificity of AAV is determined by the viral capsid serotype. This specificity allows you to target your gene of interest to certain tissues and cells, so it is critical to select the right AAV serotype to ensure optimal gene delivery. Below is our list of recommended AAV serotypes for different tissue types. If you are unsure which AAV serotype will work best for your system, our AAV GFP Testing Kit can help guide your selection.

    Tissue type Recommended AAV Serotypes
    Muscle AAV1, AAV6, AAV8, AAV9
    Liver AAV8, AAV9, AAV-DJ
    Lung AAV5, AAV6, AAV9
    Central Nervous System AAV1, AAV5, AAV8, AAV9, AAV-DJ
    Retina AAV1, AAV2, AAV5, AAV8
    Pancreas AAV8
    Kidney AAV2, AAV9
    Heart AAV1, AAV8, AAV9
  • How much plasmid DNA do I need to provide for AAV packaging?

    If you will be ordering a clone that you want packaged in AAV, please provide us with the RefSeq number or Charles River catalog number. If you will be sending us a plasmid, please refer to the table below. When possible, we recommend sending DNA obtained from an endo-free maxiprep. If you do not have the recommended amount of plasmid for the desired AAV service, we can prepare endotoxin-free DNA from your sample for an additional fee.

    AAV services Amount of plasmid to send
    Cloning 5-10 µg at conc. of >0.5 µg/µL
    Transformation (DNA preps) >1 µg
    Small-scale AAV packaging 
    Titer: 5×1012  GC/mL
    >150 µg
    Large-scale AAV packaging 
    Titer: 1013  GC/mL, 0.5 mL
    >300 µg
    Large-scale AAV packaging 
    Titer: 1013  GC/mL, 1.0 mL
    >500 µg

    Prior to sending us a transfer plasmid for AAV packaging, we strongly recommend that you check the integrity of your plasmid by restriction digestion to ensure there are no issues during AAV packaging. This can be done by performing a restriction enzyme digest with SmaI or XmaI, which will cut at a site within each ITR to remove the insert and linearize your plasmid. If you notice excessive amounts of linearized full-length plasmid, recombination has occurred and this plasmid is unlikely to package successfully into AAV. If you are unable to check the integrity of your plasmid, we can perform the digestion on your plasmids for an additional fee.

  • How much plasmid do I need to provide for lentivirus packaging?

    If you will be ordering a clone you want packaged, please provide us with the RefSeq number or Charles River’s catalog number. If you will be sending us a plasmid, please refer to the table below. When possible, we recommend sending DNA obtained from a maxiprep. If you do not have the recommended amount of plasmid for lentivirus packaging, we can prepare endotoxin-free DNA from your sample for an additional fee.

    Lentivirus services Amount of plasmid to send
    Cloning 5-10 µg at conc. of >0.5 µg/µL
    Transformation (DNA preps) >1 µg
    Small-scale lentivirus packaging
    Titer: 2×10IFU/mL
    Large-scale lentivirus packaging
    Titer: 109 IFU/mL
    >150 µg at 1 µg/µL or higher

    >200 µg at 1 µg/µL or higher
  • How much plasmid do I need to provide for adenovirus packaging?

    If you will be ordering a clone you want packaged, please provide us with the RefSeq number or Vigene catalog number. If you will be sending us a plasmid, please refer to the table below. When possible, we recommend sending DNA obtained from a maxiprep. If you do not have the recommended amount of plasmid for adenovirus packaging, we can prepare endotoxin-free DNA from your sample for an additional fee.

    Adenovirus services Amount of plasmid to send
    Cloning 5-10 µg at conc. of >0.5 µg/µL
    Transformation (DNA preps) >1 µg
    Adenovirus packaging 5-10 µg at conc. of >0.5 µg/µL
  • What is the biosafety level of recombinant lentivirus?

    Since lentivirus can infect human cells, precautions should be strictly followed. Recombinant lentiviruses are considered to be at Biosafety level 2 (BSL2). Safety considerations have been implemented when engineering recombinant lentiviral vectors as gene delivery tools. One major safety strategy is splitting the viral essential genes and LTR containing lentiviral transfer vector into separate plasmids. The gene of interest (GOI) that is going to be delivered into cells is provided on a separate plasmid, called lentiviral transfer vector, which is flanked by the long terminal repeats (LTRs). The lentiviral transfer vector containing the GOI and LTRs will be packaged into the lentiviral particles, but the lentiviral packaging plasmids containing the viral essential genes will not be packaged due to lack of the packaging signal and LTRs. Our lentiviral vectors are third generation vector, which is even safer. 5’ LTR is hybrid and the 3’ SIN (self inactivating) LTR does not support lentiviral replication after integrating into the host genome, which makes it to be replication deficient.

  • What is the biosafety level of recombinant adenovirus?

    All work with adenoviruses should be performed in a BSL-2 facility, which is the biosafety level of most cell culture facilities. For all of our adenovirus packaging services, we use replication-incompetent (E1/E3 genes deleted) human adenovirus type 5 (Ad5). Please note that although recombinant adenovirus is replication-incompetent, there is a small chance of generating replication-competent adenovirus through recombination events between the viral vector and the packaging cell line expressing an essential gene for viral replication (E1). To avoid this, we recommend that you do not serially propagate adenovirus because the odds of creating replication-competent adenovirus increases with each round of amplification.