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Proteofection

An efficient method of introducing proteins into cells

Proteofection – known as the direct transport of proteins into living eukaryotic cells – is a versatile alternative to transfection of nucleic acids and opens up a range of new options in research of eukaryotic cell processes.

With cationic lipids especially aligned to proteins, and specifically their surface structures, it is also possible to introduce proteins in eukaryotic cells. Such lipid-based formulas spontaneously bind with proteins to form protein-lipid complexes known as proteoplexes. These proteoplexes are actively taken up by eukaryotic cells by means of endocytosis and transported into the cell interior. Both the proteins and the antibodies, with structure and function unchanged, are released from the endosomes to develop their activity there.

 

Mechanism

  • 1. Spontaneous formation of proteofection-active complexes comprising cationic lipids with proteins (proteoplexes)
  • 2. Take-up of proteoplexes by means of endocytosis
  • 3. Release of the protein without loss of structure and activity by means of destruction (osmotic effects and fusion) of the endosome membrane

 

Schematic diagram of proteofection processes | Biontex