Strategies for ocular siRNA delivery: Potential and limitations of non-viral nanocarriers

Ajit Thakur, Scott Fitzpatrick, Abeyat Zaman, Kapilan Kugathasan, Ben Muirhead, Gonzalo Hortelano, Heather Sheardown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)


Controlling gene expression via small interfering RNA (siRNA) has opened the doors to a plethora of therapeutic possibilities, with many currently in the pipelines of drug development for various ocular diseases. Despite the potential of siRNA technologies, barriers to intracellular delivery significantly limit their clinical efficacy. However, recent progress in the field of drug delivery strongly suggests that targeted manipulation of gene expression via siRNA delivered through nanocarriers can have an enormous impact on improving therapeutic outcomes for ophthalmic applications. Particularly, synthetic nanocarriers have demonstrated their suitability as a customizable multifunctional platform for the targeted intracellular delivery of siRNA and other hydrophilic and hydrophobic drugs in ocular applications. We predict that synthetic nanocarriers will simultaneously increase drug bioavailability, while reducing side effects and the need for repeated intraocular injections. This review will discuss the recent advances in ocular siRNA delivery via non-viral nanocarriers and the potential and limitations of various strategies for the development of a 'universal' siRNA delivery system for clinical applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalJournal of Biological Engineering
Publication statusPublished - Jun 11 2012


  • Biomaterials
  • Drug delivery
  • Endosomal escape
  • Nanocarriers
  • Ocular siRNA delivery
  • RNAi
  • siRNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Strategies for ocular siRNA delivery: Potential and limitations of non-viral nanocarriers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this