Background: Myocardial infarction (MI) is the most severe ischemic heart disease and directly
leads to heart failure till death. Target molecules have been identified in the event of MI including
increasing angiogenesis, promoting cardiomyocyte survival, improving heart function and restraining
inflammation and myocyte activation and subsequent fibrosis. All of which are substantial in cardiomyocyte
protection and preservation of cardiac function.
Methodology: To modulate target molecule expression, virus and non-virus-mediated gene transfer
have been investigated. Despite successful in animal models of MI, virus-mediated gene transfer is
hampered by poor targeting efficiency, low packaging capacity for large DNA sequences, immunogenicity
induced by virus and random integration into the human genome.
Discussion: Nanoparticles could be synthesized and equipped on purpose for large-scale production.
They are relatively small in size and do not incorporate into the genome. They could carry DNA and
drug within the same transfer. All of these properties make them an alternative strategy for gene transfer.
In the review, we first introduce the pathological progression of MI. After concise discussion on
the current status of virus-mediated gene therapy in treating MI, we overview the history and development
of nanoparticle-based gene delivery system. We point out the limitations and future perspective
in the field of nanoparticle vehicle.
Conclusion: Ultimately, we hope that this review could help to better understand how far we are with
nanoparticle-facilitated gene transfer strategy and what obstacles we need to solve for utilization of
nanomedicine in the treatment of MI.