Research ArticleGENETICS

Gold-DNA nanosunflowers for efficient gene silencing with controllable transformation

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Science Advances  02 Oct 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 10, eaaw6264
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aaw6264


The development of an efficient delivery system for enhanced and controlled gene interference–based therapeutics is still facing great challenges. Fortunately, the flourishing field of nanotechnology provides more effective strategies for nucleic acid delivery. Here, the triplex-forming oligonucleotide sequence and its complementary strand were used to mediate self-assembly of ultrasmall gold nanoparticles. The obtained sunflower-like nanostructures exhibited strong near-infrared (NIR) absorption and photothermal conversion ability. Upon NIR irradiation, the large-sized nanostructure could disassemble and generate ultrasmall nanoparticles modified with c-myc oncogene silencing sequence, which could directly target the cell nucleus. Moreover, the controlled gene silencing effect could be realized by synergistically controlling the preincubation time with the self-assembled nanostructure (in vitro and in vivo) and NIR irradiation time point. This study provides a new approach for constructing more efficient and tailorable nanocarriers for gene interference applications.

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