Lipids for Nucleic Acid Delivery: Synthesis and Particle Formation

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Abstract

Lipidic vesicles have been extensively studied for their capacity to condensate and deliver nucleic acids to the cells. Many different amphiphilic lipidic structures have been proposed, each of them bringing some advances in nonviral gene transfection. The ionic or neutral nature of the lipids induces tremendous differences in the behavior of the corresponding liposomes, from the complexation of nucleic acid to the delivery to the cell. An efficient delivery in vitro or in vivo also depends closely on the structure of the lipids and very often, efficient liposomes in vitro have been found useless for in vivo administration.

We wish to describe in this chapter the chemical synthesis of two different lipids, one cationic and the other essentially neutral, and the formulation to obtain liposomes and DNA/liposome complexes. The different ways and tricks for the formulation of the two different structures are especially highlighted.