Gene delivery from tissue engineering scaffolds has potential to promote localized transgene expression that can induce the formation of functional tissues. Substrate-mediated delivery, an alternative delivery strategy to sustained release, is based on immobilization of DNA complexes to the polymer surface for subsequent delivery to cells cultured on the substrate. We investigate polyethylenimine (PEI)/DNA complex immobilization and subsequent cellular transfection on tissue engineering scaffolds fabricated from poly(lactide-co-glycolide) (PLG). The properties of the substrate and the complex affect both immobilization and cellular transfection. PLG promotes binding of PEI/ DNA complexes, with percent bound independent of the N/P ratio or the DNA dosage. The levels of transgene expression are similar to or greater than control studies based on bolus DNA delivery, with orders of magnitude less DNA. Immobilization also homogeneously distributes the DNA throughout the scaffold, resulting in large numbers of transfected cells (>60%) at low surface quantities (<50 ng). Importantly, this approach can be employed to transfect cells throughout a three-dimensional scaffold. Tissue engineering scaffolds that are prefabricated into various shapes from a range of materials could potentially employ this strategy for numerous applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ceramics and Composites
- Biomedical Engineering
- Metals and Alloys