Yukio Nagasaki on Using siRNA to Improve Drug Efficiency

Fast Moving Front Commentary, September 2010

Yukio Nagasaki

Article: Lactosylated poly(ethylene glycol)-siRNA conjugate through acid-labile ss-thiopropionate linkage to construct pH-sensitive polyion complex micelles achieving enhanced gene silencing in hepatoma cells

Authors: Oishi, M;Nagasaki, Y;Itaka, K;Nishiyama, N;Kataoka, K
Journal: J AM CHEM SOC, 127 (6): 1624-1625 FEB 16 2005
Addressess: Sci Univ Tokyo, Dept Mat Sci & Technol, 2641 Yamazaki, Noda, Chiba 2788510, Japan.
Sci Univ Tokyo, Dept Mat Sci & Technol, Noda, Chiba 2788510, Japan.
Univ Tokyo, Dept Orthopaed Surg, Fac Med, Bunkyo Ku, Tokyo 1138655, Japan.
(Addresses have been truncated)

Yukio Nagasaki talks with ScienceWatch.com and answers a few questions about this month's Fast Moving Fronts paper in the field of Chemistry.

SW: Why do you think your paper is highly cited?

It is quite important deliver low-molecular-weight oligonucleotides, especially siRNA, in order to improve drug efficiency. Because the material we prepared gives site-specific siRNA function, this system is much more effective than other works related to siRNA delivery systems.

SW: Does it describe a new discovery, methodology, or synthesis of knowledge?

PEG-siRNA conjugate is reported by our group and acid labile linkage between PEG and siRNA is a unique idea to control siRNA trafficking in cells.

SW: Would you summarize the significance of your paper in layman’s terms?

"We succeeded to prepare siRNA carrying system and found the siRNA used in this study was delivered to the area, where we want."

In order to use oligonucleotides as a therapeutic drug, it is important to deliver siRNA to a specific area in cells. We succeeded in preparing siRNA carrying system and found the siRNA used in this study was delivered to the area we wanted. This is one of the starting points of development in high-performance gene-delivery systems.

SW: How did you become involved in this research, and how would you describe the particular challenges, setbacks, and successes that you've encountered along the way?

I was a polymer chemist and we wanted to use new polymers, which we prepared, that could be utilized in a biological environment. Biocompatible surfaces, carrier for drug delivery system, and bioimaging materials have been developed so far. Since it is really difficult to deliver low-molecular-weight oligonucleotides in vivo and in vitro, we started to prepare this compound using our synthetic skills.

SW: Where do you see your research leading in the future?

I have no idea. I am a professor of University of Tsukuba. It is fairly good position. I have now started collaboration with good scientists in the world, such as at National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan, and I want to extend this kind of network.

SW: Do you foresee any social or political implications for your research?

I think that it is important to improve gene therapy. However, it is not easy to develop this kind of work because we need huge money to establish it. Thus, governments or large organizations must be supportive of this kind of research in the future.End

Yukio Nagasaki, Ph.D., Professor
Graduate School of Pure and Applied Sciences
University of Tsukuba
Tsukuba Research Center for Interdisciplinary Materials Science (TIMS)
Master's School of Medical Sciences
Graduate School of Comprehensive Human Sciences
University of Tsukuba
Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan

Project Leader
Center for Tsukuba Advanced Research Alliance (TARA)
University of Tsukuba
Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan

Principal Investigator
International Center for Materials Nanoarchitechtonics
National Institute for Materials Science
Tsukuba, Japan

Adjunct Professor of Polyscale Technology Center
Research Institute for Science and Technology
Tokyo University of Science
Noda, Japan

International Conference in Biomaterials Science at Tsukuba (ICBS2011)
In honor of 60th birthday of Professor Kazunori Kataoka
March 15 (Tue) - 18 (Fri), 2011, Tsukuba, Japan




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