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Magnet Assisted Transfection (MATra) with MagTag®

Magnet Assisted Transfection (MATra) is a new, easy-to-handle, very fast and highly efficient technology to transfect cells in culture. All types of nucleic acids, from plasmid DNA or siRNA to oligonucleotides, can be used with the MATra approach. Data from a variety of species using cell lines or primary tissue culture have been accumulated, including human, monkey, mouse, rat, xenopus, pig, cat or fish.

Using this new technique, nucleic acids are in a first step associated with specific magnetic nanoparticles (MagTag®). By exploiting magnetic force, the full nucleic acid dose is then drawn towards and delivered into the target cells leading to efficient transfection without disturbing the membrane architecture, without causing chromosomal damage or leaving a hole in the cell membrane like other transfection technologies. Cellular uptake occurs by either endocytosis or pinocytosis. Delivered to the target cells, the DNA is released into the cytoplasm. The magnetic particles are accumulated in endosomes and/or vacuoles and over time, the nanoparticles are degraded and the iron enters the normal iron metabolism, without affecting cellular functions.

Magnet Assisted Transfection-MATra is based on the entry of DNA loaded nanoparticles into the cell via the magnetic field without disturbing the membrane architecture.

Methods and reagents

Two approaches are possible: for a standard Magnet Assisted Transfection (MA Transfection) “MATra-A Reagent” is used for plasmid transfection and "MATra-si Reagent" for siRNA and oligo transfection; for more critical cells it is also possible to combine the MATra technology with lipofection (“Magnet Assisted Lipofection”; MA Lipofection). For this purpose, we offer “MA Lipofection Enhancer” and the high-efficiency lipofection reagent “IBAfect”. The MA Lipofection Enhancer can also increase the efficiency of viral transfections.

Both techniques can be used with adherent cells as well as with suspension cells. However, for the latter cells have to be localized at the bottom of the cell culture plate using the MATra-S Immobilizer. MATra can also be adapted to highthroughput transfection assays using robotic stations and adapted protocols.

IBA fect principle

1) IBAfect (cationic lipids) condenses DNA to compact structures within DNA/RNA/lipid-complexes.

2) These positively charged DNA/RNA/lipid-complexes bind to and enter the cell by endocytosis.

3) The DNA/RNA/lipid-complex acts as a "proton sponge" that buffers the endosomal pH, since the hydrophilic unit contains several sites which can be protonated.

4) Continuous proton influx induces osmotic swelling and rupture. As a result, nucleic acids are released simultaneously from the DNA/RNA/lipid-complex by Progressive Proton-assisted Lipid Layer Disintegration (P.P.L.L.D.).

5) Nucleic acids are released into the cytosol.