Close Menu CLOSE
Small Interfering RNA

RNAi Graphic V2The discovery of RNA interference (RNAi) and the roles that short interfering RNA (siRNA) and micro-RNA (miRNA) play in directing the reversible silencing of genes has enabled the creation of a whole new class of RNA therapeutics to target disease-causing genes that may be otherwise undruggable.


RNAi therapeutics currently being developed are poised to revolutionize:

• Cancer treatments
• Rare genetic disease treaments
• Immuno-therapy

Small RNA requires a delivery vehicle to protect against nucleases and to facilitate cellular uptake and release into the cytoplasm. Nanoparticles effectively solve several challenges facing small RNA delivery for basic research and drug development:

• Protection from nucleases
• Delivery and release into the cytoplasm
• Laborious and time consuming viral packaging
• Safety concerns with viral vectors
• Toxicity with other delivery methods
• A single approach for RNA delivery for all stages of research and drug development


Nanoparticle formulations can be prepared on demand in seconds with NanoAssemblr technology.

Overcome Challenges in Small RNA Delivery

Several nanoparticle formulations are being explored to package and deliver siRNA including:

Lipid nanoparticle image
Lipid nanoparticle image
Polymer NPs and Micelles
Lipid nanoparticle image

Among these, nucleic acid-LNPs are the most clinically advanced. The first RNAi drug slated for approval (Patisiran) uses LNPs to deliver siRNA. There are however challenges to producing siRNA-loaded nanoparticles that NanoAssemblr technology addresses:

Challenges with Conventional Methods Benefits of NanoAssemblr Technology
Significant batch-to-batch variabilityorangeRightArrowCreate highly reproducible siRNA lipid nanoparticles
Substantial material loss from low encapsulation efficiencyorangeRightArrowGenerate siRNA lipid nanoparticles with high encapsulation efficacy and transfection potency
A labour-intensive production process that is difficult to scale up or scale downorangeRightArrowRapidly produce formulations for screening and optimization with a straightforward path to scale-up for clinical applications

Key Benefits

Highly Reproducible siRNA LNP formulations

Indep BT users copyParticle size and PDI determined by dynamic light scattering of siRNA LNPs produced by 3 independent users on the NanoAssemblr Benchtop demonstrating process consistency.

High Encapsulation Efficiency and Potency

siRNA potencySerum levels of Factor VII protein in mice following i.v. injection of siRNA-LNPs show a dose-dependent response. At RNA doses of 1 mg/kg over 90% knockdown was achieved for LNPs made on the NanoAssemblr Benchtop, Blaze and Scale-Up systems.

Straightforward to Scale Production

scalable sizeConsistent results for size & PDI of siRNA LNPs achieved across the NanoAssemblr Platform. Size & PDI were determined by DLS from triplicate formulations. Composition was determined by HPLC.

How It Works
1) An organic solvent containing dissolved lipids and an aqueous solution containing nucleic acids are injected into the two inlet channels of the NanoAssemblr cartridge.
2) Under laminar flow, the two solutions do not immediately mix, but microscopic features engineered into the channel cause the two fluids to intermingle in a controlled and reproducible way.
3) Within a millisecond, the two fluids are completely mixed, causing a change in solvent polarity that triggers the self-assembly of lipid nanoparticles loaded with nucleic acids.

4) Changing the speed and ratio of fluid injection controls the size of the lipid nanoparticles.
5) Lipid nanoparticles mimic low-density lipoproteins, which allows them to be taken up by an endogenous cellular transport pathway to deliver nucleic acids to cells.
6) Using pH sensitive lipids allow lipid nanoparticles to release encapsulated nucleic acidsinto the cytoplasmwhen vesicle pH decreases.

Get Started

To learn how Precision NanoSystems accelerates nanomedicine development from an idea to clinical applications, contact our Technical Sales Team.

Get in Touch

siRNA Resources

Publication - Abstract

April 26, 2018

Small Methods

State‐of‐the‐Art Design and Rapid‐Mixing Production Techniques of Lipid Nanoparticles for Nucleic Acid Delivery

Evers, M. J. W., Kulkarni, J. A., van der Meel, R., Cullis, P. R., Vader, P., & Schiffelers, R. M.

Read More

Publication - Abstract

May 25, 2018

Multiple Myeloma

Microfluidic Production and Application of Lipid Nanoparticles for Nucleic Acid Transfection

A Thomas, SM Garg, RAG De Souza, E Ouellet,G Tharmarajah, D Reichert, M Ordobadi, S Ip, E C Ramsay

Read More

Publication - Abstract

April 03, 2018

ACS Nano

On the Formation and Morphology of Lipid Nanoparticles Containing Ionizable Cationic Lipids and siRNA

J. Kulkarni , M. Darjuan, J. Mercer, S. Chen, R. van der Meel, J. Thewalt , Y. Tam, and P. Cullis

Read More


April 01, 2018

A Scalable Microfluidics Platform for the Development of Nanoparticles

Read More PDF

Publication - Abstract

March 19, 2018

Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews

Advances in Microfluidics for Lipid Nanoparticles and Extracellular Vesicles and Applications in Drug Delivery Systems

M. Maekia, N. Kimurab,Y. Satoc, H. Harashimac, M. Tokeshi

Read More

Publication - Abstract

January 29, 2018

Nature Nanotechnology

A Modular Platform for Targeted RNAi Therapeutics

R. Kedmi, N. Veiga, S. Ramishetti, M. Goldsmith, D. Rosenblum, N. Dammes, I. Hazan-Halevy, L. Nahary, S. Leviatan-Ben-Ar...

Read More
Resource Center

Stay Informed

Sign up today to automatically receive new Precision NanoSystems application notes, conference posters, relevant science publications, and webinar invites.