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Using Ethidium To Probe Nonequilibrium States of DNA Condensed for Gene Delivery

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journal contribution
posted on 22.02.2011, 00:00 by Kristina Fant, Bengt Nordén, Per Lincoln
Here we explore the use of ethidium to determine relative affinities of different gene delivery vectors for DNA and describe an improved method for studying the interaction. Specifically, we investigate the binding of poly(amidoamine) dendrimers and show that the DNA−dendrimer−ethidium system is far from thermodynamic equilibrium. Moreover, dendrimer surface modification through PEGylation appears to make the interaction with DNA more reversible, which is favorable from the perspective of vector unpacking. Probing the nonequilibrium state of DNA during condensation processes is thus important for developing novel vectors, and further, it could also be useful in the study of chromatin folding.