Journal Article

Polyethyleneimine-modified calcium carbonate nanoparticles for p53 gene delivery

Cen Chen, Huafeng Han, Wei Yang, Xiaoyuan Ren and Xiangdong Kong

in Regenerative Biomaterials

Published on behalf of Chinese Society for Biomaterials

Volume 3, issue 1, pages 57-63
Published in print March 2016 | ISSN: 2056-3418
Published online January 2016 | e-ISSN: 2056-3426 | DOI:

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  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Biological Engineering
  • Materials Science


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In this study, calcium carbonate (CaCO3) nanoparticles with spherical structure were regulated by arginine and successfully synthesized via a facile co-precipitation method. The average particle size of as-prepared CaCO3 was about 900 nm. The properties of nanostructured CaCO3 particles were characterized by scanning electron microscope, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction and size distribution. After modified with polyethyleneimine (PEI), the ability of PEI-CaCO3 nanoparticles to carry GFP-marked p53 gene (pEGFP-C1-p53) into cancer cells to express P53 protein were studied. Meanwhile, the cytotoxicity, transfection efficiency, cells growth inhibition and the ability to induce apoptosis by expressed P53 protein were conducted to evaluate the performances of PEI-CaCO3 nanoparticles. The results show that prepared PEI-CaCO3 nanoparticles had good biocompatibility and low cytotoxicity in a certain concentration range. PEI-CaCO3 effectively transfected pEGFP-C1 gene into epithelial-like cancer cells. And with the expression of GFP-P53 fusion protein, pEGFP-C1-p53-gene-loaded PEI-CaCO3 particles significantly reduced the proliferation of cancer cells. These findings indicate that our PEI-modified CaCO3 nanoparticles are potential to be successfully used as carriers for gene therapy.

Keywords: calcium carbonate; gene therapy; nanoparticles; polyethyleneimine; p53

Journal Article.  3109 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Reproductive Medicine ; Biological Engineering ; Materials Science

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