Nonviral gene delivery systems consist predominantly of lipoplexes or receptor-targeting and nontargeting polyplexes. We examined integrin-mediated gene delivery using an Arg-Gly-Asp/oligo-L-lysine ([K]16RGD) cyclic peptide and investigated its gene transfer efficiency when associated with a cationic liposome. We demonstrated that human cystic fibrosis and noncystic fibrosis tracheal epithelial cells in culture express integrins that recognise the RGD integrin-binding motif. We found a 10-fold (P < 0.01) increased expression of a luciferase encoding plasmid in these cells when complexing the plasmid to the [k]16RGD peptide as compared with plasmid alone. This increase was specific to the [K]16RGD peptide since neither a [K]16RGE nor a [K]16 peptide gave a comparable increase. Expression was further enhanced 30-fold (P < 0.01) with lipofectamine and the ratio of dna/peptide/lipofectamine was critical for specificity and expression. fluorescence and radioactive labelling of the complex showed that the [k]16RGD peptide increased the endocytic uptake of DNA into cells. The cell association of both DNA and peptide increased even further with lipofectamine. Confocal microscopy showed that the [K]16RGD peptide and the DNA internalised together within 30 min and localised to vesicles in the perinuclear region. These results show that an integrin-binding ligand can deliver genetic material to airway cells and that a cationic liposome can enhance the efficacy of this nonviral vector system.
About this article
Cite this article
Colin, M., Harbottle, R., Knight, A. et al. Liposomes enhance delivery and expression of an RGD-oligolysine gene transfer vector in human tracheal cells. Gene Ther 5, 1488–1498 (1998). https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.gt.3300760
- cystic fibrosis
- gene therapy