The activation of caspase-3 is an important hallmark in Parkinson's disease. It could induce neuron death by apoptosis and microglia activation by inflammation. As a result, inhibition the activation of caspase-3 would exert synergistic dual effect in brain in order to prevent the progress of Parkinson's disease. Silencing caspase-3 genes by RNA interference could inhibit the activation of caspase-3. We developed a brain-targeted gene delivery system based on non-viral gene vector, dendrigraft poly-L-lysines. A rabies virus glycoprotein peptide with 29 amino-acid linked to dendrigraft poly-L-lysines could render gene vectors the ability to get across the blood brain barrier by specific receptor mediated transcytosis. The resultant brain-targeted vector was complexed with caspase-3 short hairpin RNA coding plasmid DNA, yielding nanoparticles. In vivo imaging analysis indicated the targeted nanoparticles could accumulate in brain more efficiently than non-targeted ones. A multiple dosing regimen by weekly intravenous administration of the nanoparticles could reduce activated casapse-3 levels, significantly improve locomotor activity and rescue dopaminergic neuronal loss and in Parkinson's disease rats' brain. These results indicated the rabies virus glycoprotein peptide modified brain-targeted nanoparticles were promising gene delivery system for RNA interference to achieve anti-apoptotic and anti-inflammation synergistic therapeutic effects by down-regulation the expression and activation of caspase-3. © 2013 Liu et al.
Liu, Y., Guo, Y., An, S., Kuang, Y., He, X., Ma, H., … Jiang, C. (2013). Targeting Caspase-3 as Dual Therapeutic Benefits by RNAi Facilitating Brain-Targeted Nanoparticles in a Rat Model of Parkinson’s Disease. PLoS ONE, 8(5). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0062905