Recent efforts combining nanotechnology and magnetic properties resulted in the development and commercialization of magnetic nanoparticles that can be used as carriers for nucleic acids for in vitro transfection and for gene therapy approaches including DNA-based vaccination strategies. The efficiency of intracellular delivery is still a limiting factor for basic cell biological research and also for emerging technologies such as temporary gene silencing based on inhibitory RNA/siRNA. Nanotechnology has resulted in a variety of different nanostructures and especially nanoparticles as carriers in a wide range of new drug delivery systems for conventional drugs, recombinant proteins, vaccines and more recently nucleic acids. It is possible to combine superparamagnetic nanoparticles with magnetic forces to increase, direct and optimize intracellular delivery of biomolecules. This article discusses the main approaches in the field of magnet assisted transfection (MATra) focusing on the transfection or intracellular delivery of nucleic acids, although also suitable to improve the intracellular delivery of other biomolecules.
Keywords: Magnet assisted transfection, MATra, nucleic acids, intracellular delivery, nanoparticles, magnetic gene transfection, magnetic nanoparticles
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