In this study, we utilized selectively modified, biodegradable polymer-based polyplexes to deliver custom, exogenous miR-148b mimics to induce apoptosis in human lung cancer (A549) cells. The gene regulatory effects of the payload miRNA mimics (miR-148b-3p) were first evaluated through bioinformatic analyses to uncover specific gene targets involved in critical carcinogenic pathways. Hyperbranched poly(β amino ester) polyplexes (hPBAE) loaded with custom miR-148b mimics were then developed for targeted therapy. When evaluated in vitro, these hPBAE-based polyplexes sustained high intracellular uptake, low cytotoxicity, and efficient escape from endosomes to deliver functionally intact miRNA mimics to the cytosol. High-resolution confocal microscopy revealed successful intracellular uptake, cell viability was assessed through qualitative fluorescence microscopy and fluorescence-based DNA quantification, and successful cytosolic delivery of intact miRNA mimics was evaluated using real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) to demonstrate target gene knockdown. The hPBAE-miRNA mimic polyplexes were shown to induce apoptosis among A549 cells through direct modulation of intracellular protein expression, targeting multiple potential carcinogenic pathways at the gene level. These results indicated that spatially controlled miR-148b mimic delivery can promote efficient cancer cell death in vitro and may lead to an enhanced therapeutic design for in vivo application.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Materials Science(all)
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Surfaces and Interfaces