Gene delivery remains to be a very challenging field to efficiently transport the therapeutic gene and to modulate proteins with the desired function at the target site. The physiochemical and biological barriers are the major hurdles that need to be considered, particularly when administered systematically, in order to optimize the therapeutic efficacy. Numerous modifications have been extensively investigated aiming to provide protection from the plasma degradation, enhancement of transfection, target specificity, and most importantly, minimizing the side effects such as cellular toxicity and immune response. This article provides a review with respect to the in vitro and in vivo toxicity, as well as cellular and physiological interactions with the gene delivery system composed from viral vectors, cationic lipids and polymers. Recent progress and development are also addressed, with promising results that may be further adopted for clinical use.
Keywords: Gene delivery, cytotoxicity, cationic polymer, liposome, non-viral vector
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