Reactive oxygen species (ROS)-induced oxidative stress leads to neuron damage and is involved in the pathogenesis of chronic inflammation in neurodegenerative diseases (NDs), such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Researchers, therefore, are looking for antiinflammatory drugs and gene therapy approaches to slow down or even prevent neurological disorders. Combining therapeutics has shown a synergistic effect in the treatment of human diseases. Many nanocarriers could be designed for the simultaneous codelivery of drugs with genes to fight diseases. However, only a few researches have been performed in NDs. In this study, we developed a mesoporous silica nanoparticle (MSN)-based approach for neurodegenerative therapy. This MSN-based platform involved multiple designs in the targeted codelivery of (1) curcumin, a natural antioxidant product, to protect ROS-induced cell damage and (2) plasmid RhoG-DsRed, which is associated with the formation of lamellipodia and filopodia for promoting neurite outgrowth. At the same time, TAT peptide was introduced to the plasmid RhoG-DsRed via electrostatic interaction to elevate the efficiency of nonendocytic pathways and the nuclear plasmid delivery of RhoG-DsRed in cells for enhanced gene expression. Besides, such a plasmid RhoG-DsRed/TAT complex could work as a noncovalent gatekeeper. The release of curcumin inside the channel of the MSN could be triggered when the complex was dissociated from the MSN surface. Taken together, this MSN-based platform combining genetic and pharmacological manipulations of an actin cytoskeleton as well as oxidative stress provides an attractive way for ND therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas