Washington: In a major step towards genetherapy, scientists claim to have designed a new device -- ananoparticle -- which can effectively deliver genes into cellswith minimal toxic effects.In laboratory experiments, a team at Ohio StateUniversity has found that this device, a vector, is able todeliver DNA deeply enough into cell to allow genetic materialto be activated -- a critical step in gene therapy. This vector is between two-and-a-half and 10 timesmore effective than other experimental materials, according tothe scientists. In fact, in their research, the scientists combinedtwo ingredients -- calcium phosphate and a lipid shell -- tocreate a nanoparticle that protects DNA during its journey tothe cell and then dissolves to allow for gene activation inthe target cell.
"The material we use is also biocompatible. Calciumphosphate is in our bones and the lipids we use are synthetic,but can be biologically degraded. That`s why there is lowtoxicity." The findings have been published in the `InternationalJournal of Pharmaceutics`.PTI
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