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Article

Intelligent Bio-Responsive Fluorescent Au–shRNA Complexes for Regulated Autophagy and Effective Cancer Bioimaging and Therapeutics

1
State Key Laboratory of Bioelectronics (Chien-Shiung Wu Lab), School of Biological Science and Medical Engineering, Southeast University, Nanjing 210096, China
2
Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Shunde Hospital of Southern Medical University, Shunde 528300, China
3
Department of Chemistry, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva 8410501, Israel
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Biosensors 2021, 11(11), 425; https://doi.org/10.3390/bios11110425
Received: 31 July 2021 / Revised: 24 October 2021 / Accepted: 27 October 2021 / Published: 28 October 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biosensing and Bioimaging: Trends and Perspective)
The long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) MALAT1 acts as an oncogene. RNA interference (RNAi) is an effective method to control the expression of specific genes and can be used for the treatment of tumors, but an effective and safe carrier system is a significant obstacle to gene therapy. Herein, we explored the possibility of constructing an in situ bio-responsive self-assembled fluorescent gold-short hairpin RNA nanocomplex (Au–shRNA NCs) delivery system by co-incubating gold and MALAT1-shRNA for precise hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) imaging and treatment. Due to the characteristics of the cancer microenvironment, Au–shRNA NCs self-assembled in HCC cells (HepG2) but did not occur in control cells (L02) under the same conditions. The in situ bio-responsive self-assembled Au–shRNA NCs delivery system can realize cancer cell bioimaging and promote cell uptake and endosomal escape mechanism, thereby realizing effective transfection. They effectively silenced target gene MALAT1, and with the downregulation of MALAT1, we found that several molecules involved in autophagic flux were also regulated. In vitro and tumor-bearing mouse model experiments demonstrated that the as-prepared fluorescent Au–shRNA NCs can readily realize tumor bioimaging and effectively silence the target gene MALAT1, and those autophagy-related pathway molecules were significantly downregulated, thereby exerting a tumor suppressor efficiency. This raises the possibility of realizing accurate multi-scale bio-imaging from the molecular-level with targeted gene-recognition to cancer cell imaging as well as in vivo tumor tissue imaging for the simultaneous precise cancer therapy. View Full-Text
Keywords: bio-responsive fluorescent complexes; shRNA delivery; LncRNA MALAT1; cancer cells bioimaging; therapeutics; autophagy bio-responsive fluorescent complexes; shRNA delivery; LncRNA MALAT1; cancer cells bioimaging; therapeutics; autophagy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Cai, W.; Yin, L.; Jiang, H.; Weizmann, Y.; Wang, X. Intelligent Bio-Responsive Fluorescent Au–shRNA Complexes for Regulated Autophagy and Effective Cancer Bioimaging and Therapeutics. Biosensors 2021, 11, 425. https://doi.org/10.3390/bios11110425

AMA Style

Cai W, Yin L, Jiang H, Weizmann Y, Wang X. Intelligent Bio-Responsive Fluorescent Au–shRNA Complexes for Regulated Autophagy and Effective Cancer Bioimaging and Therapeutics. Biosensors. 2021; 11(11):425. https://doi.org/10.3390/bios11110425

Chicago/Turabian Style

Cai, Weijuan, Liang Yin, Hui Jiang, Yossi Weizmann, and Xuemei Wang. 2021. "Intelligent Bio-Responsive Fluorescent Au–shRNA Complexes for Regulated Autophagy and Effective Cancer Bioimaging and Therapeutics" Biosensors 11, no. 11: 425. https://doi.org/10.3390/bios11110425

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