Nowadays, biopolymers, a class of biomaterials, represent frontier area in the drug delivery systems. Drug release from nano- and microparticles is a complex process, which involves several steps. Uptake of nanoparticle in the intracellular is affected by numerous factors. Recently, gene delivery has been considered one of the promising approaches for the treatment of various diseases acquired genetically in human being. The use of biopolymers as nanoparticles in gene delivery can potentially avoid many of the safety concerns in the gene delivery system. In gene delivery, the genetic materials such as DNA plasmids, RNA and siRNA are either encapsulated inside or conjugated to the nanoparticles, which protects the genetic materials until the drug reaches its target site. Treatment of the diseases is based on the effective delivery of the genetic materials into specific cells that are responsible for disease development. Various properties such as particle size, surface charge, morphology of the surface and release rate of the loaded molecules are the important parameters in the gene delivery system. In this chapter, various biopolymers (cationic polymers) and inorganic non-viral-delivery vectors used in gene delivery used as therapeutic agents are discussed.
Part of the book: Advanced Technology for Delivering Therapeutics