Efficient receptor-independent intracellular translocation of aptamers mediated by conjugation to carbon nanotubes

We have covalently grafted aptamers onto carboxylated carbon nanotubes to design a novel vector system that can easily translocate into the cytosol of different cell types independent of receptor-mediated uptake. We propose the use of carbon nanotubes for the efficient intracellular delivery of biologically active aptamers for potential therapeutic applications. The use of nanostructured materials for therapeutic purposes is currently the goal of many laboratories. Carbon nanotubes (CNTs) have become increasingly important within the biomedical field as they can be easily modified and exhibit a large surface area and high in vivo stability. Depending on whether they exist as a single cylindrical graphene layer or multiple concentric sheets they are typically referred to as single-walled (SWNTs) or multi-walled carbon nanotubes (MWNTs).