Targeting tuberculosis infection in macrophages using chitosan oligosaccharide nanoplexes

  • Uday Koli
  • Kayzad Nilgiriwala
  • Kalpana Sriraman
  • Ratnesh JainEmail author
  • Prajakta DandekarEmail author
Research Paper


Targeting bacterial infections using RNA interference (RNAi) has been a relatively nascent area of research as compared with cancer and viral infections. Exploring this area is especially vital due to the prevalence of numerous challenging bacterial infections that have been persistent despite treatment with antibiotics or antibiotic-loaded delivery systems. In this investigation, we formulate siRNA nanoparticle complexes, using cationic water-soluble chitosan polymer, for intracellular delivery into macrophages that serve as reservoirs of numerous pathogenic bacteria, including Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb). Cationic chitosan oligosaccharide nanoparticles of size 215.3 ± 4.19 nm were formulated by ionotropic gelation and were effectively delivered along with siRNA into the macrophages, without any obvious cytotoxicity. The siRNA-loaded nanoparticles resulted in more than two-fold down-regulation of the host gene, Bfl1/A1, as compared with untreated controls. Since the over expression of host gene Bfl1/A1 favours for survival of Mtb within macrophages, the nanoparticles present a promising potential for developing anti-tuberculosis therapy.


Mycobacteria Bfl-1/a1 siRNA delivery Chitosan oligosaccharides Macrophages Nanomedicine 


Funding information

Mr. Uday Koli was financially supported by the Department of Biotechnology (BT/PR5372/MED/29/489/2012), Govt. of India and the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE: 2012/20/37B/08/BRNS) for fellowship. Dr. Prajakta Dandekar was financially supported by the Ramanujan Fellowship Grant (SR/S2/RJN-139/2011), DST, Govt. of India. Dr. Ratnesh Jain was financially supported by the Ramalingaswami Fellowship (BT/RLF/RE-ENTRY/51/2011), DBT, Govt. of India.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and TechnologyInstitute of Chemical Technology (ICT)MumbaiIndia
  2. 2.Foundation of Medical ResearchMumbaiIndia
  3. 3.Department of Chemical EngineeringInstitute of Chemical Technology (ICT)MumbaiIndia

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