Hokkaido University Research Profiles

Life Sciences

Development of Reagents for Highly Efficient Transfection of siRNA into Immune Cells and Their Application to Cancer Immunotherapy

Development of next-generation drug delivery systems

We have developed a reagent (YSK12-MEND) to introduce siRNA into immune cells with high efficiency. If siRNA is introduced into immune cells using this reagent, the expression of immunosuppressive genes can be reduced with high efficiency, and thus it is expected to be applied to cancer immunotherapy using immune functions.

Content of research

We have developed YSK12-MEND, a reagent that can efficiently transfect siRNA, a gene expression inhibitor, into mouse and human immune cells. By using the novel reagent, the efficiency of siRNA transfection into mouse dendritic cells has improved more than 10-fold compared to the commercial product (Lipofectamine RNAiMAX). It is known that the function of immune cells is suppressed by cancer cells in cancer patients, although humans have an immune function to fight cancer cells. siRNA delivery using YSK12-MEND can efficiently suppress the expression of immunosuppressive genes in immune cells, which will enable humans to fight cancer cells with their own immune function. YSK12-MEND is expected to be one of the promising candidates for this purpose.

Potential for social implementation

  • ・Immunostimulants
  • ・Dendritic cell vaccine
  • ・A tool for analyzing immune cell function

Appealing points to industry and local governments

We would like to examine the usefulness of the siRNA-based knockdown strategy of inhibitory factors using YSK12-MEND for the development of dendritic cell vaccines through collaborative research and other means. We would also like to examine the possibility of using YSK12-MEND as a siRNA transfection reagent for the analysis of immune cell functions.

Intellectual property related to this research

PCT/JP2015/064196 「siRNA細胞内送達のための脂質膜構造体」
(日本:特許6570188号 米国:15/311644 欧州:15796352.1)