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Fan H.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | Zhang X.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | Lu Y.,University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign
Science China Chemistry | Year: 2017

DNAzymes, generated through in vitro selection processes, are single-stranded DNA catalysts that can catalyze a wide variety of reactions, such as RNA or DNA cleavage and ligation or DNA phosphorylation. Based on specific cofactor dependence and potent catalytic ability, DNAzymes have been extensively used to develop highly sensitive and specific sensing platforms for metal ions, small molecules, and biomacromolecules. However, in spite of their multiple strong enzymatic turnover properties, few reports have addressed the potential application of RNA-cleaving DNAzymes as therapeutic gene-silencing agents. The main challenges are being met with low efficiency of cellular uptake, instability and the lack of sufficient cofactors for cellular or in vivo study, which have limited the development of DNAzymes for clinical application. In recent years, substantial progress has been made to enhance the delivery efficiency and stability of DNAzymes by developing variety of methods. Smart metal oxide nanomaterials have also been used to meet the requirement of cofactors in situ. This review focuses on the gene silencing application of DNAzymes as well as their physicochemical properties. Methods of increasing the efficacy of DNAzymes in gene therapy are also discussed: delivery systems to enhance the cellular uptake, modifications to enhance the stability and smart systems to generate sufficient cofactors in situ. Finally, some future trends and perspectives in these research areas are outlined. © 2017 Science China Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

Cheng Z.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | Ding D.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | Nie X.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | Xu Y.,Molecular Science and Biomedicine Laboratory | And 4 more authors.
Science China Chemistry | Year: 2015

In this work, we fabricate an efficient and stable photocatalyst system which has superior recyclability even under concentrated acidic conditions. The photocatalyst is prepared by assembling magnetic graphitic nanocapsules, titania (TiO2) and graphene oxide (GO) into a complex system through π-π stacking and electrostatic interactions. Such catalytic complex demonstrates very high stability. Even after dispersal into a concentrated acidic solution for one month, this photocatalyst could still be recycled and maintain its catalytic activity. With methyl orange as the model molecule, the photocatalyst was demonstrated to rapidly decompose the molecules with very high photocatalytic activity under both concentrated acidic and neutral condition. Moreover, this photocatalyst retains approximately 100 wt% of its original photocatalytic activity even after multiple experimental runs, of magnetic recycling. Finally, using different samples from natural water sources and different dyes, this GO/magnetic graphitic nanocapsule/TiO2 system also demonstrates its high efficiency and recyclability for practical application. © 2015 Science China Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

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