• Dendrosome;
  • gene delivery;
  • genetic manipulation;
  • DNA vaccine;
  • animal models;
  • transfection efficiency;
  • gene porter


BACKGROUND: It was previously reported that dendrosomes, i.e. neutral, biodegradable, covalent or self-assembled, hyperbranched, spheroidal nano-particles with a size ranging from 15 to 100 nm, provide a convenient and efficient means of gene delivery into various kinds of cells such as human hepatoma and kidney cells as well as animal models.

RESULTS: New studies via circular dichroism show that hydrophilic and amphipathic dendrosomes either do not affect the DNA structure or moderately transform it from B- to A-conformation. Gene delivery into human liver, kidney, and endothelial cells as well as other animal cells like Bowes, U-937, Raw, CCRF-CEM, MOLT-4, K562, Huh-7 and VERO reveal that the genes are efficiently expressed and in comparison with other gene porters like Lipofectin or bacterial ghosts, do quite well. It is also shown that dendrosomes are able to deliver genes into cells like endothelials that are usually hard to transfect. Cell culture experiments as well as intraperitoneal/intradermal injections of dendrosomes into mice establish their nontoxicity (up to 2.5 mg kg−1 of animal weight in the latter case). Studies on immunization of BALB/c mice using conventional adjuvants such as aluminium phosphate, CpG motif and one of the dendrosomes, indicate that the latter leads to the mildest initial response development while exceeding them afterwards.

CONCLUSION: CD studies reveal that, owing to the neutrality of dendrosomes, formation of Den/DNA complexes is accompanied by slight structural modifications of DNA cell culture, and animal studies reveal that dendrosomes are inert, non-toxic and highly efficient gene porters that perform at extremely low doses. In comparison with bacterial ghosts and some common porters, they are efficient in delivery of genes into animals and a variety of cells including those that are usually hard to transfect. Copyright © 2008 Society of Chemical Industry