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Dex-Aco coating simultaneously increase the biocompatibility and transfection efficiency of cationic polymeric gene vectors

Cui, Peng-Fei, Qi, Lian-Yu, Wang, Yi, Yu, Ru-Yi, He, Yu-Jing, Xing, Lei, Jiang, Hu-Lin
Journal of controlled release 2019 v.303 pp. 253-262
anhydrides, biocompatibility, blood cells, blood proteins, coatings, endocytosis, esterification, gene therapy, genes, ligands, mice, nanomedicine, neoplasms, polymers, programmed cell death, transfection
Cationic polymeric vectors attracted plenty of attentions in gene therapy due to nonimmunogenicity, easy to synthesis and flexible properties. However, biocompatibility challenge such as nonspecific interactions with blood cells and serum proteins, may affect the delivery efficiency of cationic vectors; besides, inefficient endosomal escape causes low transfection efficiency. Herein, we synthesized an anionic coating polymer dextran-g-aconic anhydride (Dex-Aco, DA) through a simple esterification reaction, which can protect cationic polymer poly(cystamine-bis-acrylamide)-agmatine-histamine (PCAH, PC) constructed nanomedicine against interactions with blood cells and serum proteins, improving biocompatibility. Interestingly, DA coating significantly increased the transfection efficiency of cationic PC,not due to the increase of cellular uptake, nor functioning as a receptor ligand, but was associated to the change of endocytosis pathway. Finally, using programmed cell death protein 4 (PDCD4) as a functional gene, DA coating PC NPs showed improved therapeutic effect and biocompatibility on tumor bearing mice. We believe that this DA coating PC NPs provides a facile method to improve the performance of cationic polymer vectors in gene therapy and has great potential for clinical applications.