Scientific Reports – Gene transfection by shock waves

Extracorporeal shock wave (SW) therapy has been studied in the transfection of naked nucleic acids into various cell lines through the process of sonoporation, a process that affects the permeation of cell membranes, which can be an effect of cavitation. In this study, siRNAs were efficiently transfected into primary cultured cells and mouse tumor tissue via SW treatment. Furthermore SWinduced siRNA transfection was not mediated by SW-induced sonoporation, but by microparticles (MPs) secreted from the cells. Interestingly, the transfection effect of the siRNAs was transferable through the secreted MPs from human umbilical vein endothelial cell (HUVEC) culture medium after treatment with SW, into HUVECs in another culture plate without SW treatment. In this study, we suggest for the first time a mechanism of gene transfection induced by low-energy SW through secreted MPs, and show that it is an efficient physical gene transfection method in vitro and represents a safe therapeutic strategy for site-specific gene delivery in vivo.

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