RNA interference (RNAi) gene silencing by small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) offers a potent and highly specific therapeutic strategy; however, enabling technologies that overcome extracellular and intracellular barriers are required. Polycation-based nanoparticles (termed polyplexes) composed of the polysaccharide chitosan have been used to facilitate delivery of siRNA across mucosal surfaces following local administration. This chapter describes the mucosal barriers that need to be addressed in order to design an effective mucosal delivery strategy and the utilization of the mucoadhesive properties of chitosan. Focus is given to preparation methods and the preclinical application of chitosan nanoparticles for respiratory and oral delivery of siRNA.
Advances in Genetics, 2014, Vol 88, p. 325-352
Chitosan; Mucosal delivery; Nanoparticles; Polyplex; RNA interference; Small interfering RNA