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Bioconjug Chem. 2010 Dec 15;21(12):2164-7. doi: 10.1021/bc100130r. Epub 2010 Nov 2.

Generation of endosomolytic reagents by branching of cell-penetrating peptides: tools for the delivery of bioactive compounds to live cells in cis or trans.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843-2128, USA.


We describe the synthesis and cellular delivery properties of multivalent and branched delivery systems consisting of cell-penetrating peptides assembled onto a peptide scaffold using native chemical ligation. A trimeric delivery system presenting three copies of the prototypical cell-penetrating peptide TAT shows an endosomolytic activity much higher than its monomeric and dimeric counterparts. This novel reagent promotes the endosomal release of macromolecules internalized into cells by endocytosis, and as a result, it can be used to achieve cytosolic delivery of bioactive but cell-impermeable macromolecules in either cis (covalent conjugation) or trans (simple coincubation).

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