Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors

Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > DNA Taxi

Abstract:
Photosensitive gold nanoparticles can electrostatically bind DNA and then release it under UV light

DNA Taxi

Posted on April 27, 2006

Despite few successes to date, gene therapy is a highly promising approach for medical therapy in the future. One of the biggest difficulties with this process is finding a suitable transport agent that can carry the nucleic acid being used as a “drug” into the diseased target cell. Killed viruses have been used as “taxis” for these genes, but these often have unexpected health consequences.

Recently, nanoparticles have been developed for gene therapy. A successful example of this has been described by V. M. Rotello, N. S. Forbes, and their co-workers in Massachusetts, USA. They used tiny spheres of gold with tightly packed, positively charged hydrocarbon chains bound to their surface. These chains contain a photolabile bond that is stable to visible light but breaks when irradiated with UV light at a wavelength of 350 nm. This causes the positively charged fragment to fall off, leaving the gold sphere with a negative charge on its surface.

DNA contains negatively charged phosphate groups that allow it to bind to the positively charged gold spheres through electrostatic interactions. Cells that were brought into contact with gold spheres loaded with DNA allowed these “DNA taxis” to pass into their interior. The signal to “unload” was given by subsequent irradiation with UV light: it destroyed the photolabile bond, reversing the surface charge of the gold particles and releasing the DNA. Fortunately, the DNA was not only brought into the cytoplasm; it made its way to where it was needed: the cell nucleus. This is the location in the cell where DNA molecules are copied for translation into proteins or are multiplied for cell division.

This process offers a relatively simple possibility for the transport and controlled release of DNA into living cells. In addition, the authors believe that this method should make it possible to steer interactions with other biomolecules, such as proteins or pharmaceutical agents, making it possible to target specific cells.

####


Author: Vincent M. Rotello, University of Massachusetts, Amherst (USA), www.chem.umass.edu/Faculty/rotello.htm

Title: Light-Regulated Release of DNA and its Delivery to Nuclei by Means of Photolabile Gold Nanoparticles

Angewandte Chemie International Edition, 2006, 45, No. 19, 3165–3169, doi: 10.1002/anie.200600214

Contact:
Editorial office:
angewandte@wiley-vch.de

or David Greenberg (US)
dgreenbe@wiley.com

or Julia Lampam (UK)
jlampam@wiley.co.uk

Copyright © Angewandte Chemie

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

Possible Futures

Rare-earths become water-repellent only as they age March 22nd, 2017

Pulverizing e-waste is green, clean -- and cold: Rice, Indian Institute researchers use cryo-mill to turn circuit boards into separated powders March 21st, 2017

Electro-optical switch transmits data at record-low temperatures: Operating at temperatures near absolute zero, switch could enable significantly faster data processing with lower power consumption March 20th, 2017

Nanoparticle paves the way for new triple negative breast cancer drug March 20th, 2017

Nanomedicine

Nanoparticle paves the way for new triple negative breast cancer drug March 20th, 2017

Block copolymer micellization as a protection strategy for DNA origami March 17th, 2017

Nanocages for gold particles: what is happening inside? March 16th, 2017

Biophysicists propose new approach for membrane protein crystallization March 8th, 2017

Materials/Metamaterials

Rare-earths become water-repellent only as they age March 22nd, 2017

CRMGroup in Belgium uses a Deben three point bending stage in the development of new steel & coated steel products for automotive and other industrial applications March 21st, 2017

Next-gen steel under the microscope March 18th, 2017

Nanocages for gold particles: what is happening inside? March 16th, 2017

Announcements

Caught on camera -- chemical reactions 'filmed' at the single-molecule level March 22nd, 2017

Rare-earths become water-repellent only as they age March 22nd, 2017

Pulverizing e-waste is green, clean -- and cold: Rice, Indian Institute researchers use cryo-mill to turn circuit boards into separated powders March 21st, 2017

CRMGroup in Belgium uses a Deben three point bending stage in the development of new steel & coated steel products for automotive and other industrial applications March 21st, 2017

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE



  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project