Polymers at the interface with biology

Polymer synthesis for gene transfer

Gene transfer, or more generally gene therapy, is a therapeutic approach that proposes to use nucleic acids (DNA, RNA, oligonucleotides) as a drug. Polymeric vectors offer an interesting alternative to viruses because of their low immunogenicity and their ease of use. The team’s objective is to synthesize new cationic polymers capable of condensing and protecting DNA for systemic administration. In parallel, the team is developing a new family of neutral amphiphilic polymers used for intramuscular administration. In the different strategies, a low toxicity and a high transfection power is sought.

Collaboration : P. Midoux, P. Lehn, T. Montier, B. Pitard, T. Benvegnu, P.A. Jaffrès, H. Cheradame (Polytheragene)

Synthesis of star molecules capable of forming channels inserted in lipid bilayers

The objective of this theme is to synthesize new star polymers capable of forming channels inserted in a lipid bilayer. The team’s strategy is to use cyclodextrin as a scaffold molecule, which is modified to generate an initiator for polymerization of ethylene oxide, oxazoline … The number of branches and their orientation on the cyclodextrin is controlled.

In a second step, an electrical detection is used to study the insertion of a nanopore, composed of one or more cyclodextrin derivatives in a lipid bilayer. The initial objective was to develop a structure-property relationship in terms of lifetime and insertion mode of star polymers. The current work is oriented towards the functionalization of nanopores.

Collaboration : L. Auvray, J. Gierak, J. Pelta

People :

« Contribuer me donne l’impression d’être utile à la planète »

— Anna Wong, Bénévole