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Receptor-Mediated Entry of Pristine Octahedral DNA Nanocages in Mammalian Cells

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  • Giulia Vindigni, Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome Tor ‘Vergata Via’, Italy
  • Sofia Raniolo, Department of Systems Medicine, University of Rome Tor ‘Vergata Via’, Italy
  • Alessio Ottaviani, Univeristy of Rome, Tor Vergata, Italy
  • Mattia Falconi, Department of Biology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy., Italy
  • Oskar Franch
  • ,
  • Birgitta R. Knudsen
  • Alessandro Desideri, Department of Biology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy., Italy
  • Silvia Biocca, Department of Systems Medicine and Center of Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Italy, Italy
DNA offers excellent programming properties for the generation of nanometer-scaled polyhedral structures with a broad variety of potential applications. Translation to biomedical applications requires improving stability in biological fluids, efficient and selective cell binding, and/or internalization of the assembled DNA nanostructures. Here, we report an investigation on the selective mechanism of cellular uptake of pristine DNA nanocages in cells expressing the receptor “oxidized low-density lipoprotein receptor-1” (LOX-1), a scavenger receptor associated with cardiovascular diseases and, more recently, identified as a tumor marker. For this purpose a truncated octahedral DNA nanocage functionalized with a single biotin molecule, which allows DNA cage detection through the biotin–streptavidin assays, was constructed. The results indicate that DNA nanocages are stable in biological fluids, including human serum, and are selectively bound and very efficiently internalized in vesicles only in LOX-1-expressing cells. The amount of internalized cages is 30 times higher in LOX-1-expressing cells than in normal fibroblasts, indicating that the receptor-mediated uptake of pristine DNA nanocages can be pursued for a selective cellular internalization. These results open the route for a therapeutic use of pristine DNA cages targeting LOX-1-overexpressing tumor cells.
Original languageEnglish
JournalA C S Nano
Volume10
Issue6
Pages (from-to)5971–5979
Number of pages9
ISSN1936-0851
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2016

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