Description:
 
Background
The delivery of short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) always remains a key challenge in the development of RNA interference therapeutics. Northeastern University researchers are working on a technology that utilizes the brush form of the noncationic biocompatible polymer, polyethylene glycol, as a transfection vector by forming a polymer-RNA conjugate via a bioreductively cleavable linkage.
Given the advantageous biological properties of PEG in brush polymer-based technologies, the proposed method could have a significant impact on the development of new siRNA-based therapies. 
 
Technology Overview
This technology involves the development of a densely packed PEG brush, which provides the embedded RNA strands with enhanced nuclease stability, thus improving cellular uptake. Owning to the cleavable linkage, the siRNA can be liberated from the bush polymer under the reducing environment of tumor cells but maintains conjugation under normal physiological conditions. 
Remarkably, the brush polymer-mediated delivery of siRNA leads to significant knockdown of the target gene without eliciting any cytotoxicity. 
 
Benefits
- Biocompatible polymer (polyethylene glycol) for siRNA delivery
- Polymer provides long blood circulation times and the ability to target tissues outside of the liver (e.g tumor)
- Use of natural phosphodiesters for effective RNAi, bypassing the need for phosphorothioates
- Increases the enzymatic stability of the oligonucleotide while allowing it to avoid renal clearance 
 
Applications
- Medical diagnostics
- Gene therapy
- Cellular therapy
 
Opportunity
- License
- Partnering
- Research collaboration
Patent Information:
Category(s):
Biotechnology
For Information, Contact:
Colin Sullivan
Commercialization Consultant
Northeastern University
col.sullivan@northeastern.edu
Inventors:
Ke Zhang
Dali Wang
Keywords: