Exogenous and cell surface glycosaminoglycans alter DNA delivery efficiency of arginine and lysine homopeptides in distinctly different ways

Rangeetha J. Naik, Pallavi Chandra, Anita Mann, Munia Ganguli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations

Abstract

Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) expressed ubiquitously on the cell surface are known to interact with a variety of ligands to mediate different cellular processes. However, their role in the internalization of cationic gene delivery vectors such as liposomes, polymers, and peptides is still ambiguous and seems to be controlled by multiple factors. In this report, taking peptides as model systems, we show that peptide chemistry is one of the key factors that determine the dependence on cell surface glycosaminoglycans for cellular internalization and gene delivery. Arginine peptides and their complexes with plasmid DNA show efficient uptake and functional gene transfer independent of the cell surface GAGs. On the other hand, lysine peptides and complexes primarily enter through a GAG-dependent pathway. The peptide-DNA complexes also show differential interaction with soluble GAGs. In the presence of exogenous GAGs under certain conditions, arginine peptide-DNA complexes show increased transfection efficiency that is not observed with lysine. This is attributed to a change in the complex nature that ensures better protection of the compacted DNA in the case of arginine complexes, whereas the lysine complexes get destabilized under these conditions. The presence of a GAG coating also ensures better cell association of arginine complexes, resulting in increased uptake. Our results indicate that the role of both the cell surface and exogenous glycosaminoglycans in gene delivery is controlled by the nature of the peptide and its complex with DNA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18982-18993
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume286
Issue number21
DOIs
StatePublished - May 27 2011

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