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Modulation of gene expression by polymer nanocapsule delivery of DNA cassettes encoding small RNAs

  • Author(s): Yan, M
  • Wen, J
  • Liang, M
  • Lu, Y
  • Kamata, M
  • Chen, ISY
  • et al.
Abstract

© 2015 Yan et al. Small RNAs, including siRNAs, gRNAs and miRNAs, modulate gene expression and serve as potential therapies for human diseases. Delivery to target cells remains the fundamental limitation for use of these RNAs in humans. To address this challenge, we have developed a nanocapsule delivery technology that encapsulates small DNA molecules encoding RNAs into a small (30nm) polymer nanocapsule. For proof of concept, we transduced DNA expression cassettes for three small RNAs. In one application, the DNA cassette encodes an shRNA transcriptional unit that downregulates CCR5 and protects from HIV-1 infection. The DNA cassette nanocapsules were further engineered for timed release of the DNA cargo for prolonged knockdown of CCR5. Secondly, the nanocapsules provide an efficient means for delivery of gRNAs in the CRISPR/Cas9 system to mutate integrated HIV-1. Finally, delivery of microRNA-125b to mobilized human CD34+ cells enhances survival and expansion of the CD34+ cells in culture.

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