Gold nanoparticle mediated laser transfection for efficient siRNA mediated gene knock down.

PloS one

PubMedID: 23536802

Heinemann D, Schomaker M, Kalies S, Schieck M, Carlson R, Murua Escobar H, Ripken T, Meyer H, Heisterkamp A. Gold nanoparticle mediated laser transfection for efficient siRNA mediated gene knock down. PLoS ONE. 2013;8(3):e58604.
Laser based transfection methods have proven to be an efficient and gentle alternative to established molecule delivery methods like lipofection or electroporation. Among the laser based methods, gold nanoparticle mediated laser transfection bears the major advantage of high throughput and easy usability. This approach uses plasmon resonances on gold nanoparticles unspecifically attached to the cell membrane to evoke transient and spatially defined cell membrane permeabilization. In this study, we explore the parameter regime for gold nanoparticle mediated laser transfection for the delivery of molecules into cell lines and prove its suitability for siRNA mediated gene knock down. The developed setup allows easy usage and safe laser operation in a normal lab environment. We applied a 532 nm Nd:YAG microchip laser emitting 850 ps pulses at a repetition rate of 20.25 kHz. Scanning velocities of the laser spot over the sample of up to 200 mm/s were tested without a decline in perforation efficiency. This velocity leads to a process speed of ~8 s per well of a 96 well plate. The optimal particle density was determined to be ~6 particles per cell using environmental scanning electron microscopy. Applying the optimized parameters transfection efficiencies of 88% were achieved in canine pleomorphic adenoma ZMTH3 cells using a fluorescent labeled siRNA while maintaining a high cell viability of >90%. Gene knock down of d2-EGFP was demonstrated and validated by fluorescence repression and western blot analysis. On basis of our findings and established mathematical models we suppose a mixed transfection mechanism consisting of thermal and multiphoton near field effects. Our findings emphasize that gold nanoparticle mediated laser transfection provides an excellent tool for molecular delivery for both, high throughput purposes and the transfection of sensitive cells types.