Tiny DNA Strands Track Drug-Delivery Vehicles | AIChE

Tiny DNA Strands Track Drug-Delivery Vehicles


Nucleic-acid-based molecules (DNA, RNA) have emerged in recent years as promising drugs for treating a range of genetic diseases, including cancer, diabetes, cystic fibrosis, hemophilia, and infectious, cardiovascular, inflammatory, and neurodegenerative diseases. Currently, the use of nucleic-acid drugs is limited by several factors, including inefficient delivery to target tissues and cells.

“Drug delivery is a really substantial hurdle that needs to be overcome,” says James Dahlman, a former graduate student at MIT and now an assistant professor in the Wallace H. Coulter Dept. of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory Univ. “Regardless of their biological mechanisms of action, all genetic therapies need safe and specific drug delivery to the tissue you want to target.”

For the past 20 years, scientists have been developing nanoparticles as drug-delivery vehicles. The testing has been slow-going, however, because there are so many possible combinations of materials available (thousands of nanoparticles with distinct chemical structures and properties) and many nanoparticles must be tested in vitro in cell culture before a small number can be evaluated in vivo in animals.

Scientists at the Univ. of Florida, Georgia Tech, and...

Would you like to access the complete CEP News Update?

No problem. You just have to complete the following steps.

You have completed 0 of 2 steps.

  1. Log in

    You must be logged in to view this content. Log in now.

  2. AIChE Membership

    You must be an AIChE member to view this article. Join now.

Copyright Permissions 

Would you like to reuse content from CEP Magazine? It’s easy to request permission to reuse content. Simply click here to connect instantly to licensing services, where you can choose from a list of options regarding how you would like to reuse the desired content and complete the transaction.