Harrick PlasmaNews & ResearchProgramming Naive T Cells

Adoptive T cell therapy (or T-cell transfer therapy) is an emerging immunotherapy with the potential to improve outcomes for late-stage cancer patients. The technique relies on programming naïve T cells to induce therapeutic responses directly in vivo. However, it’s currently limited by the traditional methods in which T cells are preactivated, resulting in the loss of their naïve state and critical characteristics. Mon et al addresses this limitation in their recent article by employing advanced nanotechnology methods, facilitated by plasma treatment.

In the article, cleaning and activating the surface of silicon nanowire chips with plasma treatment is an essential step. Plasma treatment removes nanoscale organic contamination, creating a pristine surface with polar hydroxyl groups. Following plasma treatment, the silicon nanowire surface is further functionalized by conjugating a silane-functionalized NHS moiety, specifically Silane-PEG-NHS. This step creates a covalent bond between the hydroxyl group on the silicon nanowire surface and the silane, effectively attaching the NHS group to the nanowire surface as an amide conjugation linker. The PEG chains between the two functional groups are crucial as they serve to suppress non-specific binding of charged molecules to the modified surfaces. This is particularly important because it helps to reduce any excessive polyethyleneimine (PEI) coating on the nanowire surfaces, which could otherwise interfere with the intended functionality.

The entire process aims to achieve a clean and functionalized surface that can effectively bind the desired biomolecules while minimizing unwanted interactions. The use of PEG chains enhances the specificity and efficiency of the surface modification, ensuring that the silicon nanowires maintain their functional integrity for subsequent applications. This detailed approach to surface modification is essential for developing reliable and high-performing silicon nanowire-based devices, particularly in applications such as biosensing and therapeutic programming of cells, where precision and specificity are paramount.

Harrick Plasma’s High Power Expanded plasma cleaner was used in this article. The silicon nanowires were treated for 3 minutes at 45W and a vacuum pressure of 400 mtorr.


Programming Naive T Cells Article

Mon, K. J. Y., Kim, S., Dai, Z., West, J. D., Zhu, H., Jain, R., Grimson, A., Rudd, B. D., & Singh, A. (2024). Functionalized nanowires for miRNA-mediated therapeutic programming of naïve T cells. Nature Nanotechnology. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41565-024-01649-7

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