In vivo release of plasmid DNA from composites of oligo(poly(ethylene glycol)fumarate) and cationized gelatin microspheres

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Composites of cationized gelatin microspheres (CGMS), crosslinked with either 3 mM or 6 mM glutaraldehyde solution, and a novel hydrogel material, oligo(poly(ethylene glycol)fumarate) (OPF) were fabricated and investigated toward prolonging the release of plasmid DNA in vivo relative to the constituent materials. The composites and constituent materials were investigated in a subcutaneous murine model to assess the release of 125I-labeled plasmid DNA and 125I-labeled cationized gelatin in vivo. The time profiles of the radioactivity remaining were employed to compare the profiles of DNA release and cationized gelatin degradation. Both composite formulations (incorporating either 3 mM or 6 mM CGMS) prolonged the bioavailability of plasmid DNA relative to both injected plasmid DNA solution and the respective non-embedded cationized gelatin microspheres. Injected plasmid DNA solution persisted in the subject for only 7-10 days, whereas the persistence of DNA from composites of OPF and either 3 mM or 6 mM CGMS extended to at least day 42. The 3 mM and 6 mM CGMS each increased the persistence of DNA slightly, relative to injection of DNA solution, to between 28 and 35 days. Interestingly, the release profile of plasmid DNA from composites was not significantly different from the release of DNA from OPF alone. The release of plasmid DNA from the composites was in accord with the degradation of the microspheres within the OPF. These results show that composites of OPF and cationized gelatin microspheres are able to prolong the availability of plasmid DNA in vivo relative to cationized gelatin microspheres alone and provide a promising candidate material for the sustained, controlled release of plasmid DNA.

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