Mucoadhesive poly (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles having a modified shell-matrix derived from polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) and Carbopol (CP), a biodegradable polymer coating, to improve the adhesion and cell transfection properties were developed. The optimum formulations utilized a CP concentration in the range of 0.05-0.2%w/v, and were formed using modified emulsion-solvent evaporation technique. The resulting CP-PLGA nanoparticles were characterized in terms of their physical and chemical properties. The absorbed CP on the PLGA shell-matrix was found to affect the particle size and surface charge, with 0.05% CP giving rise to smooth spherical particles (0.05CP-PLGA) with the smallest size (285.90 nm), and strong negative surface charge (-25.70 mV). The introduction of CP results in an enhancement of the mucoadhesion between CP-PLGA nanoparticles and mucin particles. In vitro cell internalization studies highlighted the potential of 0.05CP-PLGA nanoparticles for transfection into SiHa cells, with uptake being time dependent. Additionally, cytotoxicity studies of CP-PLGA nanoparticles against SiHa cancer cells indicated that low concentrations of the nanoparticles were non-toxic to cells (cell viability >80%). From the various formulations studied, 0.05CP-PLGA nanoparticles proved to be the optimum model carrier having the required mucoadhesive profile and could be an alternative therapeutic efficacy carrier for targeted mucosal drug delivery systems with biodegradable polymer.