Small interfering RNA (siRNA) molecules have great potential for developing into a future therapy for breast cancer. To overcome the issues related to rapid degradation and low transfection of naked siRNA, polyethylenimine (PEI)-coated human serum albumin (HSA) nanoparticles have been characterized and studied here for efficient siRNA delivery to the MCF-7 breast cancer cell line. The optimized nanoparticles were ~90 nm in size, carrying a surface charge of +26 mV and a polydispersity index (PDI) less than 0.25. The shape and morphology of the particles was studied using electron microscopy. A cytotoxicity assessment of the nanoparticles showed no correlation of cytotoxicity with HSA concentration, while using high molecular weight PEI (MW of 70 against 25 kDa) showed higher cytotoxicity. The optimal transfection achieved of fluorescin-tagged siRNA loaded into PEI-coated HSA nanoparticles was 61.66 ± 6.8%, prepared with 6.25 μg of PEI (25 kDa) added per mg of HSA and 20 mg/ml HSA, indicating that this nonviral vector may serve as a promising gene delivery system.
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This work is supported by research grant to Satya Prakash from Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR) (MOP 93641), Canada. Sana Abbasi is supported by the McGill Faculty of Medicine Internal Studentship—G. G. Harris Fellowship. Arghya Paul acknowledges the financial support from NSERC Alexander Graham Bell Canada Graduate Scholarship. The authors are grateful for the assistance provided for TEM imaging by Dr. Xue-Dong Liu, McGill, Department of Physics.
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Abbasi, S., Paul, A. & Prakash, S. Investigation of siRNA-Loaded Polyethylenimine-Coated Human Serum Albumin Nanoparticle Complexes for the Treatment of Breast Cancer. Cell Biochem Biophys 61, 277–287 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12013-011-9201-9