Hypoxia-Targeted siRNA Delivery

Authors

  • Dr. F. Perche,

    1. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bouve College of Health Sciences, Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, Northeastern University, 140 The Fenway, Room 230, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (USA)
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    • These authors contributed equally and should be considered first authors.

  • Dr. S. Biswas,

    1. Birla Institute of Technology & Science-Pilani, Hyderabad Campus, Jawahar Nagar, Shameerpet Mandal, A.P - 500078 (India)
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    • These authors contributed equally and should be considered first authors.

  • Dr. T. Wang,

    1. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bouve College of Health Sciences, Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, Northeastern University, 140 The Fenway, Room 230, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (USA)
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  • Dr. L. Zhu,

    1. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bouve College of Health Sciences, Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, Northeastern University, 140 The Fenway, Room 230, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (USA)
    2. Irma Lerma Rangel College of Pharmacy, Texas A&M University Health Science Center, Kingsville, TX 78363 (USA)
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  • Prof. V. P. Torchilin

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bouve College of Health Sciences, Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, Northeastern University, 140 The Fenway, Room 230, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (USA)
    • Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Bouve College of Health Sciences, Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Nanomedicine, Northeastern University, 140 The Fenway, Room 230, 360 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115 (USA)===

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  • This work was supported by grant U54CA151881 to V.P.T. We are grateful to Prof. Mansoor M. Amiji for providing access to the Kodak Imager and William Fowle for transmission electron microscopy.

Abstract

Altered vasculature and the resultant chaotic tumor blood flow lead to the appearance in fast-growing tumors of regions with gradients of oxygen tension and acute hypoxia (less than 1.4 % oxygen).1 Due to its roles in tumorigenesis and resistance to therapy, hypoxia represents a problem in cancer therapy.1, 2 Insufficient delivery of therapeutic agents to the hypoxic regions in solid tumors is recognized as one of the causes of resistance to therapy.1, 3 This led to the development of hypoxia imaging agents,4 and the use of hypoxia-activated anticancer prodrugs.2a Here we show the first example of the hypoxia-induced siRNA uptake and silencing using a nanocarrier consisting of polyethyleneglycol 2000, azobenzene, polyethyleneimine (PEI)(1.8 kDa), and 1,2-dioleyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine (DOPE) units (the nanocarrier is referred to as PAPD), where azobenzene imparts hypoxia sensitivity and specificity.4a We report hypoxia-activated green fluorescent protein (GFP) silencing in vitro and its downregulation in GFP-expressing tumors after intravenous administration. The proposed nanoformulation represents a novel tumor-environment-responsive modality for cancer targeting and siRNA delivery.

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