Pentablock copolymers of pluronic F127 and modified poly(2-dimethyl amino)ethyl methacrylate for internalization mechanism and gene transfection studies
Shih-Jer Huang,1 Tzu-Pin Wang,1 Sheng-I Lue,2 Li-Fang Wang1
1Department of Medicinal and Applied Chemistry, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; 2Department of Physiology, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Abstract: Cationic polymers are one of the major nonviral gene delivery vectors investigated in the past decade. In this study, we synthesized several cationic copolymers using atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP) for gene delivery vectors: pluronic F127-poly(dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate) (PF127-pDMAEMA), pluronic F127-poly (dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate-tert-butyl acrylate) (PF127-p(DMAEMA-tBA)), and pluronic F127-poly(dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate-acrylic acid) (PF127-p(DMAEMA-AA)). The copolymers showed high buffering capacity and efficiently complexed with plasmid deoxyribonucleic acid (pDNA) to form nanoparticles 80–180 nm in diameter and with positive zeta potentials. In the absence of 10% fetal bovine serum, PF127-p(DMAEMA-AA) showed the highest gene expression and the lowest cytotoxicity in 293T cells. After acrylic acid groups had been linked with a fluorescent dye, the confocal laser scanning microscopic image showed that PF127-p(DMAEMA-AA)/pDNA could efficiently enter the cells. Both clathrin-mediated and caveolae-mediated endocytosis mechanisms were involved. Our results showed that PF127-p(DMAEMA-AA) has great potential to be a gene delivery vector.
Keywords: nonviral vector, pluronic F127, dimethylaminoethyl methacrylate, copolymer, atom transfer radical polymerization