Oligonucleotides structure influences the interactions between cationic polymers and oligonucleotides

Sumati Sundaram, Sandra Viriyayuthakorn, Charles M. Roth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Scopus citations


We examined the effect of oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) structure on the interactions between cationic polymers and ODNs. Unstructured and hairpin structured ODNs were used to form complexes with the model cationic polymer, poly-L-lysine (pLL), and the characteristics of these polymer-ODN interactions were subsequently examined. We found that hairpin structured ODNs formed complexes with pLL at slightly lower pLL:ODN charge ratios as compared to unstructured ODNs and that, at high charge ratios, greater fractions of the hairpin ODNs were complexed, as measured by dye exclusion. The dissociation of pLL-ODN interactions was tested further by challenge with heparin, which induced complex disruption. Both the kinetics and heparin dose response of ODN release were determined. The absolute amount and the kinetic rate of ODN release from the complexes of pLL and unstructured ODN were greater, as compared to hairpin ODNs. Our results therefore highlight the role of ODN structure on the association-dissociation behavior of polymer-ODN complexes. These findings have implications for the selection of ODN sequences and design of polymeric carriers used for cellular delivery of ODNs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2961-2968
Number of pages8
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2005


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Biomaterials
  • Polymers and Plastics
  • Materials Chemistry

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