Gene silencing via RNA interference (RNAi) has demonstrated great potential for the treatment of diseases by halting the production of target proteins. The major challenge in realizing the potential of RNAi therapies resides in delivering small interfering RNA (siRNA) effectively to the cytoplasm of a target cell.
Joseph M. DeSimone, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, USA, and colleagues for the first time polymerize siRNA in hydrogel particles for controlled intracellular delivery. The siRNA cargo was found to be adequately protected by the particles and only released upon reaching the reducing environment of the cytoplasm for effective gene knockdown.
Further investigation into shape, size, and surface decoration of siRNA-conjugated hydrogels should enable efficacious targeted in vivo RNAi therapies.
- Reductively Responsive siRNA-Conjugated Hydrogel Nanoparticles for Gene Silencing,
Stuart S. Dunn, Shaomin Tian, Steven Blake, Jin Wang, Ashley L. Galloway, Andrew Murphy, Patrick D. Pohlhaus, Jason P. Rolland, Mary E. Napier, Joseph M. DeSimone,
J. Am. Chem. Soc. 2012.