Apoptosis induction activity and molecular docking studies of survivin siRNA carried by Fe3O4-PEG-LAC-chitosan-PEI nanoparticles in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells

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Delivery of small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) into cells still remains a challenge in gene delivery studies. Here, we investigated the ability of synthesized Fe3O4-PEG-LAC-chitosan-PEI nanoparticles for siRNA delivery of survivin as the model gene into cells. The cellular uptake of survivin siRNA carried by synthesized nanoparticles into MCF-7 breast cancer cell line was evaluated by florescent microscopy and flowcytometry, both proving the efficacy of nanoparticles in delivery of up to 64.7% in comparison with lipofectamine 2000. Furthermore, the delivery of survivin siRNA by the nanoparticles (nanoplex) induced apoptosis that was assessed through DAPI staining and Annexin V/PI assays. In addition, we evaluated the efficacy of treatment with nanoplexes in the presence of mitoxantrone, as a chemotherapeutic agent. Our data indicated that inhibition of survivin expression increased the cell sensitivity to mitoxantrone. Real-time PCR and western blotting analysis revealed a significant reduction in mRNA and protein levels of survivin upon delivery of siRNA. Molecular docking studies showed that nanoparticles can bind to centeral BIR domain of survivin, exactly above zinc ion location with high affinity (ΔG: −10.3 Kcal/mol). Also, thermodynamic studies proved the experimental results theoretically, revealing that the siRNA-loaded nanoparticles have a suppressing effect on survivin mRNA. Therefore, delivery of survivin siRNA into MCF-7 cells using Fe3O4-PEG-LAC-chitosan-PEI nanoparticles as a carrier enhances the cell death.

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