Navigation Links
New American Chemical Society podcast: Genetically-engineered spider silk for gene therapy
Date:11/16/2011

WASHINGTON, Nov. 16, 2011 A new episode in the American Chemical Society's (ACS) award-winning "Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions" podcast series spins a real-life tale in which spider silk shows promise for overcoming a major barrier to the use of gene therapy in everyday medicine.

The new installment from the world's largest scientific society explains in non-technical language that gene therapy involves the use of beneficial genes to prevent or treat disease. It requires safe and efficient carriers or "vectors." Those carriers are the counterparts to pills and capsules, transporting therapeutic genes into cells in the body. Safety and other concerns surround the experimental use of viruses to insert genes. The lack of good gene delivery systems is a main reason why there are no FDA-approved gene therapies, despite almost 1,500 clinical trials since 1989. The new study focused on one promising prospect, silk proteins, which are biocompatible and have been used in everyday medicine and medical research for decades.

David Kaplan, Ph.D., notes in the podcast that he modified spider silk proteins so that they attach to diseased cells and not to healthy cells. He also engineered the spider silk to be able to carry a gene that codes for a protein that makes fireflies glow so that they could provide a visual signal that's seen with specialized equipment that the gene has reached its intended cellular target.

In lab studies using mice containing human breast cancer cells, the spider-silk proteins attached to the cancer cells and injected the DNA material into the cells without harming the mice. Kaplan says that the results suggest that genetically-engineered spider-silk proteins represent a versatile, very highly tailorable and useful new platform polymer for nonviral gene delivery.

The new podcast is available without charge at iTunes and from www.acs.org/globalchallenges.

Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions is a series of podcasts describing some of the 21st Century's most daunting problems, and how cutting-edge research in chemistry matters in the quest for solutions. Global Challenges is the centerpiece in an alliance on sustainability between ACS and the Royal Society of Chemistry. Global Challenges is a sweeping panorama of global challenges that includes dilemmas such as providing a hungry, thirsty world with ample supplies of safe food and clean water; developing alternatives to petroleum to fuel society; preserving the environment and assuring a sustainable future for our children; and improving human health. During the 2011 global celebration of the International Year of Chemistry (IYC), Global Challenges/Chemistry Solutions also is focusing on the main themes of IYC health, environment, energy, and materials.


'/>"/>

Contact: Michael Bernstein
m_bernstein@acs.org
202-872-6042
American Chemical Society
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Rusk experts present at American Association of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation meeting
2. Gladstone founder receives American Heart Association Distinguished Scientist Award
3. Bonnie Bassler chosen North American Laureate for L’OREAL-UNESCO award
4. NYU Langone experts present at American College of Rheumatology 2011 Annual Meeting
5. Unisys Security Index Shows Americans Will Take Action against Organizations That Compromise Their Personal Data
6. New research on GI health unveiled at American College of Gastroenterologys 2011 Meeting
7. ONR strengthens partnerships at Hispanic-American conference
8. 21 Fellows inducted into American College of Medical Informatics
9. American Society of Plant Biologists supports science outreach by grad students and postdocs
10. Evolutionary biologist inducted into American Academy of Arts and Sciences
11. American Life Sciences Innovation Council Launches
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/30/2017)...  On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com will host the ... hackathon at Microsoft,s headquarters in Redmond, Washington ... developing health and wellness apps that provide a unique, ... is the first hackathon for personal genomics and ... in the genomics, tech and health industries are sending ...
(Date:3/29/2017)... the health IT company that operates the largest health ... today announced a Series B investment from BlueCross BlueShield ... investment and acquisition accelerates higi,s strategy to create the ... activities through the collection and workflow integration of ambient ... secures data today on behalf of over 36 million ...
(Date:3/24/2017)... 24, 2017 The Controller General of Immigration from ... Abdulla Algeen have received the prestigious international IAIR Award for the ... Continue Reading ... ... Controller Abdulla Algeen (small picture on the right) have received the IAIR ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/21/2017)... ... 21, 2017 , ... The team at Cell Signaling ... which attendees will learn about the assembly and topological architecture of mammalian SWI/SNF ... of the development and validation of new high-quality recombinant monoclonal antibodies, participants will ...
(Date:8/18/2017)... ... August 18, 2017 , ... OAI, a leading Silicon ... Microfluidics Industries, announces the new Model 800E front and backside, semi-automatic mask aligner ... mask aligners. OAI has already received and installed several orders for the ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... King of Prussia, PA (PRWEB) , ... August 16, 2017 , ... ... leaders will be taking part in sessions at the ISPE Annual Meeting and ... the Marriott Marquis San Diego Marina. The event’s theme is “Driving innovation to advance ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... , ... While art and science are often thought of as two completely ... A Mesh Is Also a Snare, a group exhibition presented by the Philadelphia-based ... Gallery (EKG) on August 17 and run through September 30. An opening reception will ...
Breaking Biology Technology: