Thursday, September 29, 2011

β-arrestin siRNA Delivery in vivo and Increased Analgesia

I have reported use of our i-FectTM siRNA delivery kit for gene expression analysis studies of Cav1.2, DOR, hTERT, The β3 subunit of the Na+,K+-ATPase, rSNSR1, NTS1. NAV1.8, , TRPV1, Survivin, Flaviviruses and more.

I would like to congratulate Dr. C.R. Lin and his team at National Taiwan University College of Medicine for silencing β-arrestin expression in vivo and the impact on opioid based analgesia. The results could be good news for improving opioid based pain therapies: C.-H.Yang, H.-W. Huang, K.-H.Chen, Y.-S.Chen, S.-M.Sheen-Chen and C.-R.Lin. Antinociceptive potentiation and attenuation of tolerance by intrathecal β-arrestin 2 small interfering RNA in rats. Br. J. Anaesth. (2011) doi: 10.1093/bja/aer291.

Background: Tolerance to the analgesic effect of opioids complicates the management of persistent pain states. We tested whether the intrathecal infusion of small interfering RNA (siRNA) against β-arrestin 2 would reduce tolerance to chronic morphine use and the severity of precipitated morphine withdrawal.

Methods: Intrathecal β-arrestin 2 (2 μg siRNA per 10 μl per rat) was injected once daily for 3 days. Rats then received a continuous intrathecal infusion of morphine (2 nmol h−1) or saline for 7 days. Daily tail-flick (TF) and intrathecal morphine challenge tests were performed to assess the effect of intrathecal β-arrestin 2 siRNA on antinociception and tolerance to morphine. Naloxone withdrawal (2 mg kg−1) was performed to assess morphine dependence.
Results: In the daily TF test, the antinociception of intrathecal morphine was increased and maintained in rats receiving β-arrestin 2 siRNA compared with the control group (morphine alone). In the probe response test, rats receiving morphine infusion with β-arrestin 2 siRNA treatment showed a significant left shift in their dose–response curve, as measured by per cent maximal possible effect (MPE), such that the AD50 was significantly decreased by a factor of 5.6 when compared with that of morphine-infused rats. In the naloxone-induced withdrawal tests, rats receiving β-arrestin 2 siRNA injection with morphine infusion showed a significant reduction in four of the six signs of withdrawal.
Conclusions: We show here that intrathecal β-arrestin 2 siRNA in rats enhances analgesia and attenuates naloxone-induced withdrawal symptoms. This may warrant further investigation in the context of long-term use of intrathecal opioids for controlling chronic pain.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Enhanced Transfection Efficiency of Human Embryonic Stem Cells

Stem cell based drug discovery and cell based therapies hold great promise. Researchers are faced with many hurdles in developing and launching meaningful therapies. Key will be a thorough understanding of  the genetically stability of the stem cells involved in these therapies. Transfection tools will help foward this understanding. Here's a representative publication: Luis G. Villa-Diaz, Jose L. Garcia-Perez and Paul H. Krebsbach. Stem Cells and Development. December 2010, 19(12): 1949-1957. doi:10.1089/scd.2009.0505.

Overview: Because human embryonic stem (hES) cells can differentiate into virtually any cell type in the human body, these cells hold promise for regenerative medicine. The genetic manipulation of hES cells will enhance our understanding of genes involved in early development and will accelerate their potential use and application for regenerative medicine. The objective of this study was to increase the transfection efficiency of plasmid DNA into hES cells by modifying a standard reverse transfection (RT) protocol of lipofection. We hypothesized that immobilization of plasmid DNA in extracellular matrix would be a more efficient method for plasmid transfer due to the affinity of hES cells for substrates such as Matrigel and to the prolonged exposure of cells to plasmid DNA. Our results demonstrate that this modification doubled the transfection efficiency of hES cells and the generation of clonal cell lines containing a piece of foreign DNA stably inserted in their genomes compared to results obtained with standard forward transfection. In addition, treatment with dimethyl sulfoxide further increased the transfection efficiency of hES cells. In conclusion, modifications to the RT protocol of lipofection result in a significant and robust increase in the transfection efficiency of hES cells.

Related Neuromics' Reagents for Testing and Gene Expression Analysis of Stem Cells:
LumiSTEM™ in vitro Cell Based Assays-Designed for Primary Stem and Explanted Cells, Stem and Other Cell Lines.
LUMENESC™ in vitro Cell Based Assays-Designed for Mesenchymal Stem/Stromal Cells (MSCs) and Cells derived from MSCs.
HALO® in vitro Cell Based Assays-Designed for Lympho-Hematopoietic Stem and Progenitor Cells.
Transfection Reagents