Solid lipid nanoparticles for gene therapy

Alicia Rodríguez Gascón, María Ángeles Solinís Aspiazu, Ana del Pozo Rodríguez


Gene therapy is a rapidly advancing field with great potential for the treatment of genetic and acquired systemic diseases. This therapy requires the introduction of foreign genetic material in the target cells to modify a genetic sequence. Viral vectors are the most effective, but their application is limited by their immunogenicitiy, oncogenicity and the small size of the DNA they can transport. Non-viral vectors, however, are safer, lowered cost, and more reproducible and do not present DNA size limit. The main problem of non-viral systems is their low transfection efficiency, although it has improved during the last years. This review presents the contribution of our research group to the design and evaluation of SLNs based non-viral vectors for gene transfer. We report our studies about the relationship between formulation factors and cell the uptake and intracellular trafficking of the genetic material, very important for transfection. We have shown, for the first time, the ability to induce transgene protein expression of the SLNs after endovenous administration to mice. This revision also reports our work about the potential application of SLNs to the treatment of infectious and rare diseases, as the X-linked juvenile retinoschisis, a retinal disorder due to a deficiency in the protein retinoschisin, and characterized by poor eyesight and degeneration of the retina. The intraocular injection of SLNs bearing the gene that encodes retinoschisin to diseased mice led to the partial recovery of the retina. All together, our results show the potential of SLNs as a system for gene delivery.

Palabras clave

gene therapy; solid lipid nanoparticles; rare diseases; Fabry disease; X linked juvenile retinoschisis; hepatitis C virus

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