Small RNA stabilization via non-covalent binding with a metalloporphyrin nanocage to accomplish synergistic gene and photodynamic therapy

Weiguang Jin, Li Xin, Gael Clergeaud Veiga, Roslyn M. Ray, Marie Karen Tracy Hong Lin, Thomas Lars Andresen, Charlotte Held Gotfredsen, Martin Nielsen, Kira Astakhova*, Katrine Qvortrup*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

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Abstract

Small RNAs (sRNAs) have emerged as attractive therapeutic agents due to their gene-editing and -regulatory properties. However, their application is severely limited by their relatively short circulation half-lives. Herein, we report a strategy binding sRNA with metalloporphyrin cages that leads to a significant protection of sRNA against RNase degradation and increased half-lives. Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) titration of nucleosides and nucleotides demonstrates that π-stacking and electrostatic interactions contribute to the sRNA binding, which occurs on the external surface of the nanocage. Moreover, the cage binding promotes sRNA internalization, and the sRNAs maintain genetic activity after release in an acidic intracellular environment. Taking advantage of the photodynamic properties of the cage, the nanosystem shows efficient in vitro cell killing through gene regulation and photodynamic effects, providing evidence for its therapeutic potential in breast cancer treatment. We envision the proposed strategy may provide new insight for the development of organometallic cage-based sRNA delivery vehicles.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101187
JournalCell Reports Physical Science
Volume3
Issue number12
Number of pages14
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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