School of Biomedical Sciences
The Chinese University of Hong Kong 香港中文大學

Gene regulation is an emerging therapeutic approach to atherosclerosis, but delivery of therapeutic gene cargoes to atherosclerotic plaques is still inefficient. A team led by Prof. Jonathan C.H. Choi, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering of CUHK, collaborated with Prof. Tian Xiaoyu, School of Biomedical Sciences (SBS), Faculty of Medicine of CUHK, to develop a novel RNA nanoparticle to offer a potentially safe, effective treatment for atherosclerosis. The related findings have been published in the international journal The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), which can be viewed HERE.

Prof. Tian, the co-corresponding author said, “The findings suggest that this RNA nanoparticle is a safe, effective agent to treat atherosclerosis, and it is now possible to design nucleic acid nanomedicines that are dual plaque targeting and therapeutic agents.” Prof. Choi added, “This study highlights the promise of nucleic acid nanotechnology to treat cardiovascular diseases. We hope to continue our collaboration with the CUHK Faculty of Medicine by validating the safety and efficacy of this RNA nanostructure in large animals. Ultimately, we hope to offer a safe, effective nanomedicine for patients with cardiovascular disease.”

The related coverage by the Communications and Public Relations Office, CUHK can be viewed HERE.

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(From left) Dr. Shirley Q. Bai and Prof. Jonathan Choi of Department of Biomedical Engineering, and Prof. Tian Xiaoyu, SBS

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The outer microRNA shell promotes the delivery of nanoparticles to the plaque upon intravenous injection into mice with atherosclerosis