In recent years, gene therapy, a new technology born from the combination of modern medicine and molecular biology, introduces genetic material (DNA or RNA) into target cells for the treatment of many serious incurable diseases, such as cancer and genetic diseases.
DNA Delivery System
DNA transfer systems (vectors) are divided into viral systems and non-viral systems.
- Viral Vectors for DNA Delivery
As a biological entity, a virus can penetrate the host cell nucleus and use cellular machinery to express its own genetic material for replication and spread to other cells. When a virus is used as a DNA delivery carrier, it needs to be modified by genetic engineering to remove the viral pathogenic gene and retain the gene capable of infecting cells. Viral vectors are commonly used vectors for DNA delivery due to their high transfection efficiency in vivo, but the genes they deliver are limited in size, low in safety, and high in cost. Viruses commonly used as vectors include retroviruses, adenoviruses, adeno-associated virus, and herpes simplex virus, among others.
- Non-viral Vectors for DNA Delivery
Compared with viral vectors, non-viral vectors have the advantages of relative safety, ease of preparation, delivery of larger genomes and low cost, but low transfection efficiency. At present, it includes two methods: physical method and chemical method.
- DNA Delivery by Physical Methods
Physical methods for DNA delivery refer to methods that do not use any carrier and cause transient damage to the target cell membrane by physical force, allowing DNA to enter the cell by diffusion, including electroporation and gene gun.
- DNA Delivery by Chemical Methods
Chemical methods for DNA delivery refer to the delivery of DNA into the nucleus of cells by means of vectors prepared by various chemical reactions. These carriers for DNA delivery (e.g., nanomaterials, VLPs, etc.) can package DNA and also, through electrostatic interactions, mask DNA negative charges, compress DNA molecules, and protect DNA from degradation by intracellular nucleases.
VLP as DNA Delivery System
Although virus-like particles (VLPs) are known for their immunogenic properties, which enable the development of vaccines, as a type of nanoparticles, VLPs can also be used for drug delivery and gene therapy. When VLPs are used in gene therapy, DNA, mRNA and siRNA can be delivered.
The capsid proteins of VLPs can be modified to display additional epitopes, or to link ligands through chemical conjugation to recognize specific surface receptors for efficient DNA delivery to target cells. In addition, the delivery of foreign genes to the digestive tract mucosa via oral non-replicating gene transfer vectors is a very useful method for vaccination and gene therapy.
How We can Help
As a global leader in the production and application of VLPs from VLPlantTM platform, CD BioSciences leverages its expertise to help our customers deliver DNA for gene therapy. We are good at tailoring our services to the needs of our clients. Please contact us if you are interested.
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