Gene therapy has been widely explored as a pharmacological approach, with a great potential to treat various diseases. Generally, many diseases have definite lesion’s site, especially for tumors. This feature results in a great demand on the delivery of therapeutic gene to the local lesion’s site. Ultrasound combined with microbubbles provides a promising platform to deliver gene in a spatiotemporally controlled way. Ultrasound beam can be positioned and targeted onto the deep-seated lesion’s site of diseases by an external mobile transducer. Microbubbles can serve as vehicles for carrying genetic cargo and can be destructed by ultrasound, resulting in the local release of genetic payload. Meanwhile, sonoporation effect will occur upon which the bubbles are exposed to the appropriate ultrasonic energy, producing the transient small holes on the adjacent cell membrane and thus increasing the vascular and cellular permeability. In this chapter, we will review the recent advances about local gene delivery by ultrasound.
Part of the book: Gene Expression and Control