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Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5(6), 643-654; doi:10.3390/ph5060643

Physical Factors Affecting Plasmid DNA Compaction in Stearylamine-Containing Nanoemulsions Intended for Gene Delivery

1, Júnior 1, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 1,*
1 Laboratório de Sistemas Dispersos (LASID), Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal/RN, Brazil 2 Laboratório de Biologia Molecular e Genômica (LBMG), Departamento de Biologia Celular e Genética, Centro de Biociências, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal/RN, Brazil 3 Programa de Pós-Graduacao em Ciência e Engenharia de Petróleo, Laboratório de Analises Extratograficas, Centro de Ciências Exatas e Tecnológicas, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), Natal/RN, Brazil 4 Departamento de Fármacos e Medicamentos, Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas, Universidade Estadual Paulista-Unesp, Rodovia Araraquara-Jaú Km 01, 14801-902, Araraquara, SP, Brazil
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 17 May 2012 / Revised: 9 June 2012 / Accepted: 13 June 2012 / Published: 18 June 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gene Therapy)
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Cationic lipids have been used in the development of non-viral gene delivery systems as lipoplexes. Stearylamine, a cationic lipid that presents a primary amine group when in solution, is able to compact genetic material by electrostatic interactions. In dispersed systems such as nanoemulsions this lipid anchors on the oil/water interface confering a positive charge to them. The aim of this work was to evaluate factors that influence DNA compaction in cationic nanoemulsions containing stearylamine. The influence of the stearylamine incorporation phase (water or oil), time of complexation, and different incubation temperatures were studied. The complexation rate was assessed by electrophoresis migration on agarose gel 0.7%, and nanoemulsion and lipoplex characterization was done by Dynamic Light Scattering (DLS). The results demonstrate that the best DNA compaction process occurs after 120 min of complexation, at low temperature (4 ± 1 °C), and after incorporation of the cationic lipid into the aqueous phase. Although the zeta potential of lipoplexes was lower than the results found for basic nanoemulsions, the granulometry did not change. Moreover, it was demonstrated that lipoplexes are suitable vehicles for gene delivery.
Keywords: gene therapy; stearylamine; cationic lipid nanoemulsions gene therapy; stearylamine; cationic lipid nanoemulsions
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Silva, A.L.; Alexandrino, F., Júnior; Verissimo, L.M.; Agnez-Lima, L.F.; Egito, L.C.M.; de Oliveira, A.G.; do Egito, E.S.T. Physical Factors Affecting Plasmid DNA Compaction in Stearylamine-Containing Nanoemulsions Intended for Gene Delivery. Pharmaceuticals 2012, 5, 643-654.

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