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Acceleration of gene transfection efficiency in neuroblastoma cells through polyethyleneimine/poly(methyl methacrylate) core-shell magnetic nanoparticles

Authors Tencomnao T, Klangthong K, Pimpha N, Chaleawlert-umpon S, Saesoo S, Woramongkolchai N, Saengkrit N

Received 27 March 2012

Accepted for publication 3 May 2012

Published 1 June 2012 Volume 2012:7 Pages 2783—2792

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S32311

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Tewin Tencomnao,1,* Kewalin Klangthong,2,* Nuttaporn Pimpha,3 Saowaluk Chaleawlert-umpon,3 Somsak Saesoo,3 Noppawan Woramongkolchai,3 Nattika Saengkrit,3
1
Center for Excellence in Omics-Nano Medical Technology Development Project, 2Graduate Program in Clinical Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, Department of Clinical Chemistry, Faculty of Allied Health Sciences, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, 3National Nanotechnology Center, National Science and Technology Development Agency, Pathumthani, Thailand

*Both authors contributed equally to this work

Background: The purpose of this study was to demonstrate the potential of magnetic poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) core/polyethyleneimine (PEI) shell (mag-PEI) nanoparticles, which possess high saturation magnetization for gene delivery. By using mag-PEI nanoparticles as a gene carrier, this study focused on evaluation of transfection efficiency under magnetic induction. The potential role of this newly synthesized nanosphere for therapeutic delivery of the tryptophan hydroxylase-2 (TPH-2) gene was also investigated in cultured neuronal LAN-5 cells.
Methods: The mag-PEI nanoparticles were prepared by one-step emulsifier-free emulsion polymerization, generating highly loaded and monodispersed magnetic polymeric nanoparticles bearing an amine group. The physicochemical properties of the mag-PEI nanoparticles and DNA-bound mag-PEI nanoparticles were investigated using the gel retardation assay, atomic force microscopy, and zeta size measurements. The gene transfection efficiencies of mag-PEI nanoparticles were evaluated at different transfection times. Confocal laser scanning microscopy confirmed intracellular uptake of the magnetoplex. The optimal conditions for transfection of TPH-2 were selected for therapeutic gene transfection. We isolated the TPH-2 gene from the total RNA of the human medulla oblongata and cloned it into an expression vector. The plasmid containing TPH-2 was subsequently bound onto the surfaces of the mag-PEI nanoparticles via electrostatic interaction. Finally, the mag-PEI nanoparticle magnetoplex was delivered into LAN-5 cells. Reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction was performed to evaluate TPH-2 expression in a quantitative manner.
Results: The study demonstrated the role of newly synthesized high-magnetization mag-PEI nanoparticles for gene transfection in vitro. The expression signals of a model gene, luciferase, and a therapeutic gene, TPH-2, were enhanced under magnetic-assisted transfection. An in vitro study in neuronal cells confirmed that using mag-PEI nanoparticles as a DNA carrier for gene delivery provided high transfection efficiency with low cytotoxicity.
Conclusion: The mag-PEI nanoparticle is a promising alternative gene transfection reagent due to its ease of use, effectiveness, and low cellular toxicity. The mag-PEI nanoparticle is not only practical for gene transfection in cultured neuronal cells but may also be suitable for transfection in other cells as well.

Keywords: magnetic nanoparticle, non-viral vector, gene delivery, tryptophan hydroxylase-2, LAN-5, neuronal cells

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