Researchers in Professor Niren Murthy’s lab have developed a way to efficiently deliver therapeutic transcription factors in living cells. Transcription factors are proteins that initiate and regulate the transcription of genes – a promising method for new treatments, but with significant delivery problems.
First author Kunwoo Lee, a PhD candidate in the UC Berkeley – UCSF Graduate Program in Bioengineering, has developed DARTs (DNA assembled recombinant transcription factors), a multifunctional oligonucleotide (short DNA or RNA molecule) with a unique molecular architecture. This allows them to bind transcription factors, trigger absorption by liver cells, and stimulate escape from the cell’s transportation structure.
Their research was published today in Nature Materials.