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Combining Gene and Chemo Therapy using Multifunctional Polymeric Micelles

Authors: Hong Yi Huang, Wei Ti Kuo, Yi You Huang


Non-viral gene carriers composed of biodegradable polymers or lipids have been considered as a safer alternative for gene carriers over viral vectors. We have developed multi-functional nano-micelles for both drug and gene delivery application. Polyethyleneimine (PEI) was modified by grafting stearic acid (SA) and formulated to polymeric micelles (PEI-SA) with positive surface charge for gene and drug delivery. Our results showed that PEI-SA micelles provided high siRNA binding efficiency. In addition, siRNA delivered by PEI-SA carriers also demonstrated significantly high cellular uptake even in the presence of serum proteins. The post-transcriptional gene silencing efficiency was greatly improved by the polyplex formulated by 10k PEI-SA/siRNA. The amphiphilic structure of PEI-SA micelles provided advantages for multifunctional tasks; where the hydrophilic shell modified with cationic charges can electrostatically interact with DNA or siRNA, and the hydrophobic core can serve as payloads for hydrophobic drugs, making it a promising multifunctional vehicle for both genetic and chemotherapy application.

Keywords: polyethyleneimine, gene delivery, micelles, siRNA

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