Protein delivery into live cells by incubation with an endosomolytic agent. Academic Article uri icon


  • We report that a tetramethylrhodamine-labeled dimer of the cell-penetrating peptide TAT, dfTAT, penetrates live cells by escaping from endosomes with high efficiency. By mediating endosomal leakage, dfTAT also delivers proteins into cultured cells after a simple co-incubation procedure. We achieved cytosolic delivery in several cell lines and primary cells and observed that only a relatively small amount of material remained trapped inside endosomes. Delivery did not require a binding interaction between dfTAT and a protein, multiple molecules could be delivered simultaneously, and delivery could be repeated. dfTAT-mediated delivery did not noticeably affect cell viability, cell proliferation or gene expression. dfTAT-based intracellular delivery should be useful for cell-based assays, cellular imaging applications and the ex vivo manipulation of cells.

published proceedings

  • Nat Methods

altmetric score

  • 26.45

author list (cited authors)

  • Erazo-Oliveras, A., Najjar, K., Dayani, L., Wang, T., Johnson, G. A., & Pellois, J.

citation count

  • 172

complete list of authors

  • Erazo-Oliveras, Alfredo||Najjar, Kristina||Dayani, Laila||Wang, Ting-Yi||Johnson, Gregory A||Pellois, Jean-Philippe

publication date

  • January 2014