Nanoparticles for death‑induced gene therapy in cancer (Review)
Roacho Pérez, Jorge A
MetadatosMostrar el registro completo del ítem
Due to the high toxicity and side effects of the use of traditional chemotherapy in cancer, scientists are working on the development of alternative therapeutic technologies. An example of this is the use of death‑induced gene therapy. This therapy consists of the killing of tumor cells via transfection with plasmid DNA (pDNA) that contains a gene which produces a protein that results in the apoptosis of cancerous cells. The cell death is caused by the direct activation of apoptosis (apoptosis‑induced gene therapy) or by the protein toxic effects (toxin‑induced gene therapy). The introduction of pDNA into the tumor cells has been a challenge for the development of this therapy. The most recent implementation of gene vectors is the use of polymeric or inorganic nanoparticles, which have biological and physicochemical properties (shape, size, surface charge, water interaction and biodegradation rate) that allow them to carry the pDNA into the tumor cell. Furthermore, nanoparticles may be functionalized with specific molecules for the recognition of molecular markers on the surface of tumor cells. The binding between the nanoparticle and the tumor cell induces specific endocytosis, avoiding toxicity in healthy cells. Currently, there are no clinical protocols approved for the use of nanoparticles in death‑induced gene therapy. There are still various challenges in the design of the perfect transfection vector, however nanoparticles have been demonstrated to be a suitable candidate. This review describes the role of nanoparticles used for pDNA transfection and key aspects for their use in death‑induced gene therapy.