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Open AccessArticle

Biodegradable Polymers Grafted onto Multifunctional Mesoporous Silica Nanoparticles for Gene Delivery

Centro de Desenvolvimento da Tecnologia Nuclear—CDTN, Avenida Presidente Antônio Carlos, 6.627 Campus UFMG, Belo Horizonte, 31270-901 MG, Brazil
Departamento de Ciências Fisiológicas—ICB, UFAM, Manaus, 69080-900 AM, Brazil
Departamento de Bioquímica e Imunologia—ICB, UFMG, Belo Horizonte, 31270-901 MG, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
ChemEngineering 2018, 2(2), 24;
Received: 6 April 2018 / Revised: 11 May 2018 / Accepted: 22 May 2018 / Published: 28 May 2018
PDF [3984 KB, uploaded 28 May 2018]


Biodegradable polymer possesses significant potential for applications in different fields, since flexibility gives rise to materials with great physical and mechanical property diversity. The poly-caprolactone (PCL) and chitosan derivatives (CS) have the ability to form scaffolds, which adhere to the surface of mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) and its porous networks. The novel characteristics of the developed PCL/MSNs and CS/MSNs, such as very low in vivo degradation rate, ordered pore network, uniform and tunable size and shape of the particles, high pore volume and surface area, non-toxicity, and biocompatibility, among others, are responsible for its favorable gene delivery device and makes this conjugation a very good biomaterial for this application. In the present study, we investigated the synthesis of silica nanoparticles MCM-41 covalently grafted with PCL and CS and their use as a potential small interfering RNA (siRNA) carrier. The physical–chemical and morphological characterizations, as well as the applicability of functionalized MSNs as platforms for gene delivery, were assessed. Our results confirmed that MSNs that were successfully functionalized with PCL and CS kept their typical morphology and pore arrangement. Furthermore, their surface modification was successfully held. In vitro biocompatibility and cytotoxicity assays suggest the ability of MSNs to support passive uptake and indicated the potential of this material as a gene delivery system for cervical cancer cells (HeLa). View Full-Text
Keywords: MCM-41; poly-caprolactone; chitosan; surface functionalization; bioapplication MCM-41; poly-caprolactone; chitosan; surface functionalization; bioapplication

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Nhavene, E.P.F.; Andrade, G.F.; Faria, J.A.Q.A.; Gomes, D.A.; Sousa, E.M.B. Biodegradable Polymers Grafted onto Multifunctional Mesoporous Silica Nanoparticles for Gene Delivery. ChemEngineering 2018, 2, 24.

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