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Open AccessArticle

Electrical Field-Assisted Gene Delivery from Polyelectrolyte Multilayers

by Yu-Che Cheng 1,2,3,†, Shu-Lin Guo 3,4,5,†, Kun-Da Chung 6 and Wei-Wen Hu 6,*
1
Proteomics Laboratory, Department of Medical Research, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei 10630, Taiwan
2
Department of Biomedical Sciences and Engineering, National Central University, Zhongli District, Taoyuan City 32001, Taiwan
3
School of Medicine, Fu Jen Catholic University, New Taipei City 24205, Taiwan
4
Department of Anesthesiology, Cathay General Hospital, Taipei 10630, Taiwan
5
Department of Anesthesiology, Tri-Service General Hospital and National Defense Medical Center, Taipei 11490, Taiwan
6
Department of Chemical and Materials Engineering, National Central University, Zhongli District, Taoyuan City 32001, Taiwan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contribute equally to this work.
Polymers 2020, 12(1), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/polym12010133
Received: 30 October 2019 / Revised: 19 December 2019 / Accepted: 1 January 2020 / Published: 6 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Polyelectrolyte Complexes in Polymer Science and Technology)
To sustain gene delivery and elongate transgene expression, plasmid DNA and cationic nonviral vectors can be deposited through layer-by-layer (LbL) assembly to form polyelectrolyte multilayers (PEMs). Although these macromolecules can be released for transfection purposes, their entanglement only allows partial delivery. Therefore, how to efficiently deliver immobilized genes from PEMs remains a challenge. In this study, we attempt to facilitate their delivery through the pretreatment of the external electrical field. Multilayers of polyethylenimine (PEI) and DNA were deposited onto conductive polypyrrole (PPy), which were placed in an aqueous environment to examine their release after electric field pretreatment. Only the electric field perpendicular to the substrate with constant voltage efficiently promoted the release of PEI and DNA from PEMs, and the higher potential resulted in the more releases which were enhanced with treatment time. The roughness of PEMs also increased after electric field treatment because the electrical field not only caused electrophoresis of polyelectrolytes and but also allowed electrochemical reaction on the PPy electrode. Finally, the released DNA and PEI were used for transfection. Polyplexes were successfully formed after electric field treatment, and the transfection efficiency was also improved, suggesting that this electric field pretreatment effectively assists gene delivery from PEMs and should be beneficial to regenerative medicine application. View Full-Text
Keywords: layer-by-layer assembly; electrical field; polypyrrole; gene delivery; polyelectrolyte multilayer layer-by-layer assembly; electrical field; polypyrrole; gene delivery; polyelectrolyte multilayer
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MDPI and ACS Style

Cheng, Y.-C.; Guo, S.-L.; Chung, K.-D.; Hu, W.-W. Electrical Field-Assisted Gene Delivery from Polyelectrolyte Multilayers. Polymers 2020, 12, 133.

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