Intracellular cargo delivery by virus capsid protein-based vehicles: From nano to micro.
Gao D, Lin XP, Zhang ZP, Li W, Men D, Zhang XE, Cui ZQ
Nanomedicine. 2016 Feb;12(2):365-76
Cellular delivery is an important concern for the efficiency of medicines and sensors for disease diagnoses and therapy. However, this task is quite challenging. Self-assembly virus capsid proteins might be developed as building blocks for multifunctional cellular delivery vehicles. In this work, we found that SV40 VP1 (Simian virus 40 major capsid protein) could function as a new cell-penetrating protein. The VP1 protein could carry foreign proteins into cells in a pentameric structure. A double color structure, with red QDs (Quantum dots) encapsulated by viral capsids fused with EGFP, was created for imaging cargo delivery and release from viral capsids. The viral capsids encapsulating QDs were further used for cellular delivery of micron-sized iron oxide particles (MPIOs). MPIOs were efficiently delivered into live cells and controlled by a magnetic field. Therefore, our study built virus-based cellular delivery systems for different sizes of cargos: protein molecules, nanoparticles, and micron-sized particles.