Cellular delivery of siRNA mediated by fusion-active virosomes

Anke Huckriede, Jorgen De Jonge, Marijke Holtrop, Jan Wilschut*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

RNA interference is expected to have considerable potential for the development of novel specific therapeutic strategies. However, successful application of RNA interference in vivo will depend on the availability of efficient delivery systems for the introduction of small-interfering RNA (siRNA) into the appropriate target cells. This paper focuses on the use of reconstituted viral envelopes ("virosomes"), derived from influenza virus, as a carrier system for cellular delivery of siRNA. Complexed to cationic lipid, siRNA molecules could be efficiently encapsulated in influenza virosomes. Delivery to cultured cells was assessed on the basis of flow cytometry analysis using fluorescently labeled siRNA. Virosome-encapsulated siRNA directed against Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) inhibited GFP fluorescence in cells transfected with a plasmid encoding GFP or in cells constitutively expressing GFP. Delivery of siRNA was dependent on the low-pH-induced membrane fusion activity of the virosomal hemagglutinin, supporting the notion that virosomes introduce their encapsulated siRNA into the cell cytosol through fusion of the virosomal membrane with the limiting membrane of cellular endosomes, after internalization of the virosomes by receptor-mediated endocytosis. It is concluded that virosomes represent a promising carrier system for cellular delivery of siRNA in vitro as well as in vivo.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-47
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Liposome Research
Volume17
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2007

Keywords

  • RNA interference
  • siRNA
  • delivery
  • virus envelope
  • fusion
  • influenza
  • hemagglutinin
  • INFLUENZA-VIRUS ENVELOPES
  • DOUBLE-STRANDED-RNA
  • EFFICIENT DELIVERY
  • RECONSTITUTION
  • MICE

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