Quantification of cellular uptake of DNA nanostructures by qPCR

Anders Hauge Okholm, Jesper Sejrup Nielsen, Mathias Vinther, Rasmus Schøler Sørensen, David Schaffert, Jørgen Kjems

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DNA nanostructures facilitating drug delivery are likely soon to be realized. In the past few decades programmed self-assembly of DNA building blocks have successfully been employed to construct sophisticated nanoscale objects. By conjugating functionalities to DNA, other molecules such as peptides, proteins and polymers can be precisely positioned on DNA nanostructures. This exceptional ability to produce modular nanoscale devices with tunable and controlled behavior has initiated an interest in employing DNA nanostructures for drug delivery. However, to obtain this the relationship between cellular interactions and structural and functional features of the DNA delivery device must be thoroughly investigated. Here, we present a rapid and robust method for the precise quantification of the component materials of DNA origami structures capable of entering cells in vitro. The quantification is performed by quantitative polymerase chain reaction, allowing a linear dynamic range of detection of five orders of magnitude. We demonstrate the use of this method for high-throughput screening, which could prove efficient to identify key features of DNA nanostructures enabling cell penetration. The method described here is suitable for quantification of in vitro uptake studies but should easily be extended to quantify DNA nanostructures in blood or tissue samples
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-197
Number of pages5
Publication statusPublished - 15 May 2014


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