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Buckets of DNA nanoparticles
05 January 2007
Molecular buckets that pack DNA into nanoparticles could have implications for gene therapy, say scientists in Greece.
Konstantina Yannakopoulou at the National Center for Scientific Research 'Demokritos' in Athens and her team have made a series of cyclic sugars, called cyclodextrins, that can interact with DNA. Cyclodextrins have a cone-like structure that allows them to act as hosts for guest molecules. This new class of cyclodextrin can compress DNA guests into nanoparticles, which is a requirement for transferring DNA into cells, said Yannakopoulou.
Molecular buckets that pack DNA into nanoparticles could have implications for gene therapy
DNA transfer is of particular interest in the field of gene therapy. Cyclodextrin-based gene transfer agents are likely to be more biocompatible, less toxic and cause fewer unwanted immune responses than other agents used in gene transfer, said Yannakopoulou.
Per(6-guanidino-6-deoxy)cyclodextrins: synthesis, characterisation and binding behaviour toward selected small molecules and DNA
N Mourtzis, K Eliadou, C Aggelidou, V Sophianopoulou, IM Mavridis and K Yannakopoulou, Org. Biomol. Chem., 2007, 5, 125