Tailoring the Architecture of Cationic Polymer Brush-Modified Carbon Nanotubes for Efficient siRNA Delivery in Cancer Immunotherapy

Danyang Li, Momina Ahmed, Anisah Khan, Lizhou Xu, Adam A. Walters, Belén Ballesteros, Khuloud T. Al-Jamal*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The facile and controlled fabrication of homogeneously grafted cationic polymers on carbon nanotubes (CNTs) remains poorly investigated, which further hinders the understanding of interactions between functionalized CNTs with different nucleic acids and the rational design of appropriate gene delivery vehicles. Herein, we describe the controlled grafting of cationic poly(2-dimethylaminoethylmethacrylate) brushes on CNTs via surface-initiated atom transfer radical polymerization integrated with mussel-inspired polydopamine chemistry. The binding of nucleic acids with different brush-CNT hybrids discloses the highly architectural-dependent behavior with dense short brush-coated CNTs displaying the highest binding among all the other hybrids, namely, dense long, sparse long, and sparse short brush-coated CNTs. Additionally, different chemistries of the brush coatings were shown to influence the biocompatibility, cellular uptake, and silencing efficiency in vitro. This platform provides great flexibility for the design of polymer brush-CNT hybrids with precise control over their structure-activity relationship for the rational design of nucleic acid delivery systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)30284-30294
Number of pages11
JournalACS Applied Materials and Interfaces
Volume13
Issue number26
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jul 2021

Keywords

  • atom transfer radical polymerization
  • carbon nanotubes
  • cationic polymer brush
  • nucleic acid interaction
  • polydopamine chemistry
  • siRNA delivery

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