Gene therapy and particularly small interfering RNA (siRNA) is a promising therapeutic method for treatment of various human diseases, especially cancer. However the lack of an ideal delivery system limits its clinical applications. Effective anticancer drug development represents the key for translation of research advances into medicines. Previously we reported, the optimization of magnetic siRNA nanovectors (MSN) formulation based on superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPION) and chitosan for systemic administration.
This work aimed at using rational design to further optimize and develop MSN. Therefore, formulated MSN were first purified, then their physical and chemical properties were studied mainly through capillary electrophoresis. 95% of siRNA was found enclosed within the purified MSN (pMSN). pMSN showed colloidal stability at pH 7.4, effective protection of siRNA against ribonuclease degradation up to 24 hours and few siRNA release (less than 10%) at pH 7.4. These findings push toward further evaluation studies in vitro and/or in vivo, indicating the appropriateness of pMSN for cancer theranostics.