Cell-permeable peptides (CPPs) have been widely studied as an attractive drug delivery system to deliver therapeutic macromolecules such as DNA, RNA, and protein into cells. However, its clinical application is still limited and controversial due to the lack of a complete understanding of delivery efficiency in target cells. Previously we identified and characterized the novel and superior CPP, named dNP2, and here we comparatively analyzed intracellular delivery efficiency of dNP2 and TAT in various immune cells of mouse spleen to demonstrate their cell type preference. dNP2- or TAT-conjugated fluorescent proteins were most efficiently taken up by phagocytic cells such as dendritic cells and macrophages while little protein uptake was seen by lymphocytes including T cells, B cells, and NK cells. Interestingly CD8+ lymphoid dendritic cells and CD62Llo CD44hi memory like T cell subsets showed significantly better uptake efficiency in vitro and in vivo relative to other dendritic cells or T cells, respectively. In addition, activated macrophages, T cells, and B cells took up the proteins more efficiently relative to when in the resting state. Importantly, only dNP2, not TAT, shows significant intracellular protein delivery efficiency in vivo. Collectively, this study provides important information regarding heterogeneous intracellular delivery efficiency of CPPs such as dNP2 and TAT with cell type preference in the spleen needed for its application in phagocytic cells or activated immune cells.
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© 2016 Lim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)