Discrete DNA nanostructures allow simultaneous features not possible with traditional DNA forms: encapsulation of cargo, display of multiple ligands, and resistance to enzymatic digestion. These properties suggested using DNA nanostructures as a delivery platform. Here, DNA pyramids displaying antisense motifs are shown to be able to specifically degrade mRNA and inhibit protein expression in vitro, and they show improved cell uptake and gene silencing when compared to linear DNA. Furthermore, the activity of these pyramids can be regulated by the introduction of an appropriate complementary strand. These results highlight the versatility of DNA nanostructures as functional devices.
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