Luminescent Inorganic and Organometallic Transition Metal Poly(ethyleneimine) Conjugates as Novel Transfection Agents

Project: Research

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The aim of this project is to design new biological tools using luminescent transition metal poly(ethyleneimine) (PEI) conjugates. Nonviral vectors for gene delivery have received increasing attention because of their high structural diversity, efficient polyplex formation, and being a safer option than their viral counterparts. Although polycationic PEI is an efficient transfection agent due to its interesting DNA binding and delivery properties, the intracellular departure of DNA from the polymer is still poorly understood. Fluorescent PEI derivatives have been designed to allow intracellular tracing by fluorescence microscopy, but organic dyes usually suffer from photobleaching, self-quenching, and short emission lifetimes. In this project, we will solve these problems by designing luminescent transition metal PEI conjugates. We will study the photophysical behavior, cytotoxicity, cellular uptake, bioimaging, and transfection properties of these conjugates. The long-term significance is the development of a new generation of biological tools for imaging and gene delivery.


Project number7008174
Grant typeSRG
Effective start/end date1/05/1213/11/14