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1.  Polymeric nanoparticles conjugate a novel heptapeptide as an epidermal growth factor receptor-active targeting ligand for doxorubicin 
Background
This study was performed to develop a functional poly(D,L-lactide-co-glycolide)- poly(ethylene glycol) (PLGA-PEG)-bearing amino-active end group for peptide conjugation.
Methods and results
PLGA was preactivated following by copolymerization with PEG diamine. The resulting amphiphilic PLGA-PEG copolymer bearing 97.0% of amino end groups had a critical micelle concentration of 3.0 × 10−8 mol/L, and the half-effective inhibition concentration (IC50) of the prepared PLGA-PEG nanoparticles was >100 mg/mL, which was much higher than that of PLGA nanoparticles (1.02 ± 0.37 mg/mL). The amphiphilic properties of PLGA-PEG spontaneously formed a core-shell conformation in the aqueous environment, and this special feature provided the amino group on the PEG chain scattered on the surface of PLGA-PEG nanoparticles for efficient peptide conjugation. The peptide-conjugated PLGA-PEG nanoparticles showed three-fold higher uptake than peptide-free PLGA-PEG nanoparticles in a SKOV3 cell line with high expression of epidermal growth factor receptor. Both peptide-conjugated and peptide-free PLGA-PEG nanoparticles were used as nanocarriers for delivery of doxorubicin. Although the rate of release of doxorubicin from both nanoparticles was similar, drug release at pH 4.0 (500 U lipase) was faster than at pH 7.4. The IC50 of doxorubicin-loaded peptide-conjugated PLGA-PEG nanoparticles in SKOV3 cells (0.05 ± 0.03 μg/mL) was much lower (by 62.4-fold) than that of peptide-free PLGA-PEG nanoparticles (3.12 ± 1.44 μg/mL).
Conclusion
This in vivo biodistribution study in SKOV3 tumor-bearing mice was further promising in that accumulation of doxorubicin in tumor tissue was in the order of peptide-conjugated PLGA-PEG nanoparticles > peptide-free PLGA-PEG nanoparticles > doxorubicin solution.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S32830
PMCID: PMC3433327  PMID: 22973097
amphiphilic copolymer; peptide; nanoparticles; SKOV3 cell; doxorubicin
2.  Adriamycin release from poly(lactide-co-glycolide)-polyethylene glycol nanoparticles: synthesis, and in vitro characterization 
The preparation, properties, and application in adriamycin delivery of biocompatible and biodegradable poly(lactide-co-glycolide)-polyethylene glycol (PLGA-PEG) nanoparticles are discussed. PLGA-PEG copolymers were synthesized by ring opening polymerization of the dl-lactide and glycolide in the presence of PEG1000.1H-NMR and FT-IR spectrum were consistent with the structure of PLGA-PEG copolymers. The adriamycin-loaded nanoparticles could be prepared using a precipitation-solvent evaporation technique. The nanoparticles have been produced by a precipitation-solvent evaporation technique. The physical characteristics and drug loading efficiency of the PLGA-PEG nanoparticles were influenced by the composition of the PLGA-PEG copolymers used to prepare the nanoparticles. Particle sizes were between 65 and 100 nm for different compositions of PLGA-PEG copolymers. PLGA-PEG nanoparticles prepared from copolymers having relatively high PLGA/PEG ratios were smaller. Entrapment efficiency was 25%–33%. Adriamycin release from the nanoparticles at pH 7.4 showed an initial burst release and then sustained release phase. These results showed that PLGA-PEG nanoparticles could be an effective carrier for cancer therapy.
PMCID: PMC2676638  PMID: 17722284
adriamycin; PLGA-PEG copolymers; cancer therapy; drug delivery systems
3.  Biodegradable Nanoparticles of mPEG-PLGA-PLL Triblock Copolymers as Novel Non-Viral Vectors for Improving siRNA Delivery and Gene Silencing 
Degradation of mRNA by RNA interference is one of the most powerful and specific mechanisms for gene silencing. However, insufficient cellular uptake and poor stability have limited its usefulness. Here, we report efficient delivery of siRNA via the use of biodegradable nanoparticles (NPs) made from monomethoxypoly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid)-poly-l-lysine (mPEG-PLGA-PLL) triblock copolymers. Various physicochemical properties of mPEG-PLGA-PLL NPs, including morphology, size, surface charge, siRNA encapsulation efficiency, and in vitro release profile of siRNA from NPs, were characterized by scanning electron microscope, particle size and zeta potential analyzer, and high performance liquid chromatography. The levels of siRNA uptake and targeted gene inhibition were detected in human lung cancer SPC-A1-GFP cells stably expressing green fluorescent protein. Examination of the cultured SPC-A1-GFP cells with fluorescent microscope and flow cytometry showed NPs loading Cy3-labeled siRNA had much higher intracellular siRNA delivery efficiencies than siRNA alone and Lipofectamine-siRNA complexes. The gene silencing efficiency of mPEG-PLGA-PLL NPs was higher than that of commercially available transfecting agent Lipofectamine while showing no cytotoxicity. Thus, the current study demonstrates that biodegradable NPs of mPEG-PLGA-PLL triblock copolymers can be potentially applied as novel non-viral vectors for improving siRNA delivery and gene silencing.
doi:10.3390/ijms13010516
PMCID: PMC3269702  PMID: 22312268
gene silencing; nanoparticles; PLGA; PLL; siRNA delivery; GFP
4.  Endostar-loaded PEG-PLGA nanoparticles: in vitro and in vivo evaluation 
Endostar, a novel recombinant human endostatin, which was approved by the Chinese State Food and Drug Administration in 2005, has a broad spectrum of activity against solid tumors. In this study, we aimed to determine whether the anticancer effect of Endostar is increased by using a nanocarrier system. It is expected that the prolonged circulation of endostar will improve its anticancer activity. Endostar-loaded nanoparticles were prepared to improve controlled release of the drug in mice and rabbits, as well as its anticancer effects in mice with colon cancer. A protein release system could be exploited to act as a drug carrier. Nanoparticles were formulated from poly (ethylene glycol) modified poly (DL-lactide-co-glycolide) (PEG-PLGA) by a double emulsion technique. Physical and release characteristics of endostar-loaded nanoparticles in vitro were evaluated by transmission electron microscopy (TEM), photon correlation spectroscopy (PCS), and micro bicinchoninic acid protein assay. The pharmacokinetic parameters of endostar nanoparticles in rabbit and mice plasma were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Western blot was used to detect endostatin in different tissues. To study the effects of endostar-loaded nanoparticles in vivo, nude mice in which tumor cells HT-29 were implanted, were subsequently treated with endostar or endostar-loaded PEG-PLGA nanoparticles. Using TEM and PCS, endostar-loaded PEG-PLGA nanoparticles were found to have a spherical core-shell structure with a diameter of 169.56 ± 35.03 nm. Drug-loading capacity was 8.22% ± 2.35% and drug encapsulation was 80.17% ± 7.83%. Compared with endostar, endostar-loaded PEG-PLGA nanoparticles had a longer elimination half-life and lower peak concentration, caused slower growth of tumor cell xenografts, and prolonged tumor doubling times. The nanoparticles changed the pharmacokinetic characteristics of endostar in mice and rabbits, thereby reinforcing anticancer activity. In conclusion, PEG-PLGA nanoparticles are a feasible carrier for endostar. Endostar-loaded PEG-PLGA nanoparticles seem to have a better anticancer effect than conventional endostar. We believe that PEG-PLGA nanoparticles are an effective carrier for protein medicines.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S14753
PMCID: PMC3000203  PMID: 21170352
medical physics; biologic physics; nanoparticles
5.  Nanoparticles of Poly(Lactide-Co-Glycolide)-d-a-Tocopheryl Polyethylene Glycol 1000 Succinate Random Copolymer for Cancer Treatment 
Nanoscale Research Letters  2010;5(7):1161-1169.
Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide. Nanomaterials and nanotechnologies could provide potential solutions. In this research, a novel biodegradable poly(lactide-co-glycolide)-d-a-tocopheryl polyethylene glycol 1000 succinate (PLGA-TPGS) random copolymer was synthesized from lactide, glycolide and d-a-tocopheryl polyethylene glycol 1000 succinate (TPGS) by ring-opening polymerization using stannous octoate as catalyst. The obtained random copolymers were characterized by 1H NMR, FTIR, GPC and TGA. The docetaxel-loaded nanoparticles made of PLGA-TPGS copolymer were prepared by a modified solvent extraction/evaporation method. The nanoparticles were then characterized by various state-of-the-art techniques. The results revealed that the size of PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles was around 250 nm. The docetaxel-loaded PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles could achieve much faster drug release in comparison with PLGA nanoparticles. In vitro cellular uptakes of such nanoparticles were investigated by CLSM, demonstrating the fluorescence PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles could be internalized by human cervix carcinoma cells (HeLa). The results also indicated that PLGA-TPGS-based nanoparticles were biocompatible, and the docetaxel-loaded PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles had significant cytotoxicity against Hela cells. The cytotoxicity against HeLa cells for PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles was in time- and concentration-dependent manner. In conclusion, PLGA-TPGS random copolymer could be acted as a novel and promising biocompatible polymeric matrix material applicable to nanoparticle-based drug delivery system for cancer chemotherapy.
doi:10.1007/s11671-010-9620-3
PMCID: PMC2893931  PMID: 20596457
PLGA-TPGS; Random copolymer; Docetaxel; Nanoparticle; HeLa; Cancer chemotherapy
6.  Nanoparticles of Poly(Lactide-Co-Glycolide)-d-a-Tocopheryl Polyethylene Glycol 1000 Succinate Random Copolymer for Cancer Treatment 
Nanoscale Research Letters  2010;5(7):1161-1169.
Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide. Nanomaterials and nanotechnologies could provide potential solutions. In this research, a novel biodegradable poly(lactide-co-glycolide)-d-a-tocopheryl polyethylene glycol 1000 succinate (PLGA-TPGS) random copolymer was synthesized from lactide, glycolide and d-a-tocopheryl polyethylene glycol 1000 succinate (TPGS) by ring-opening polymerization using stannous octoate as catalyst. The obtained random copolymers were characterized by 1H NMR, FTIR, GPC and TGA. The docetaxel-loaded nanoparticles made of PLGA-TPGS copolymer were prepared by a modified solvent extraction/evaporation method. The nanoparticles were then characterized by various state-of-the-art techniques. The results revealed that the size of PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles was around 250 nm. The docetaxel-loaded PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles could achieve much faster drug release in comparison with PLGA nanoparticles. In vitro cellular uptakes of such nanoparticles were investigated by CLSM, demonstrating the fluorescence PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles could be internalized by human cervix carcinoma cells (HeLa). The results also indicated that PLGA-TPGS-based nanoparticles were biocompatible, and the docetaxel-loaded PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles had significant cytotoxicity against Hela cells. The cytotoxicity against HeLa cells for PLGA-TPGS nanoparticles was in time- and concentration-dependent manner. In conclusion, PLGA-TPGS random copolymer could be acted as a novel and promising biocompatible polymeric matrix material applicable to nanoparticle-based drug delivery system for cancer chemotherapy.
doi:10.1007/s11671-010-9620-3
PMCID: PMC2893931  PMID: 20596457
PLGA-TPGS; Random copolymer; Docetaxel; Nanoparticle; HeLa; Cancer chemotherapy
7.  Effects of pH-sensitive chain length on release of doxorubicin from mPEG-b-PH-b-PLLA nanoparticles 
Background
Two methoxyl poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(L-histidine)-poly(L-lactide) (mPEG-PH-PLLA) triblock copolymers with different poly(L-histidine) chain lengths were synthesized. The morphology and biocompatibility of these self-assembled nanoparticles was investigated.
Methods
Doxorubicin, an antitumor drug, was trapped in the nanoparticles to explore their drug-release behavior. The drug-loaded nanoparticles were incubated with HepG2 cells to evaluate their antitumor efficacy in vitro. The effects of poly(L-histidine) chain length on the properties, drug-release behavior, and antitumor efficiency of the nanoparticles were investigated.
Results
The nanoparticles were pH-sensitive. The mean diameters of the two types of mPEG-PH- PLLA nanoparticle were less than 200 nm when the pH values were 5.0 and 7.4. The nanoparticles were nontoxic to NIH 3T3 fibroblasts and HepG2 cells. The release of doxorubicin at pH 5.0 was much faster than that at pH 7.4. The release rate of mPEG45-PH15-PLLA82 nanoparticles was much faster than that of mPEG45-PH30-PLLA82 nanoparticles at pH 5.0.
Conclusion
The inhibition effect of mPEG45-PH15-PLLA82 nanoparticles on the growth of HepG2 cells was greater than that of mPEG45-PH30-PLLA82 nanoparticles when the concentration of encapsulated doxorubicin was less than 15 μg/mL.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S32053
PMCID: PMC3423155  PMID: 22923987
poly(ethylene glycol); poly(L-histidine); poly(L-lactide); pH sensitivity; doxorubicin; drug release; nanoparticle
8.  Conjugation of cell-penetrating peptides with poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid)-polyethylene glycol nanoparticles improves ocular drug delivery 
In this work, a peptide for ocular delivery (POD) and human immunodeficiency virus transactivator were conjugated with biodegradable poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PGLA)–polyethylene glycol (PEG)-nanoparticles (NPs) in an attempt to improve ocular drug bioavailability. The NPs were prepared by the solvent displacement method following two different pathways. One involved preparation of PLGA NPs followed by PEG and peptide conjugation (PLGA-NPs-PEG-peptide); the other involved self-assembly of PLGA-PEG and the PLGA-PEG-peptide copolymer followed by NP formulation. The conjugation of the PEG and the peptide was confirmed by a colorimetric test and proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Flurbiprofen was used as an example of an anti-inflammatory drug. The physicochemical properties of the resulting NPs (morphology, in vitro release, cell viability, and ocular tolerance) were studied. In vivo anti-inflammatory efficacy was assessed in rabbit eyes after topical instillation of sodium arachidonate. Of the formulations developed, the PLGA-PEG-POD NPs were the smaller particles and exhibited greater entrapment efficiency and more sustained release. The positive charge on the surface of these NPs, due to the conjugation with the positively charged peptide, facilitated penetration into the corneal epithelium, resulting in more effective prevention of ocular inflammation. The in vitro toxicity of the NPs developed was very low; no ocular irritation in vitro (hen’s egg test–chorioallantoic membrane assay) or in vivo (Draize test) was detected. Taken together, these data demonstrate that PLGA-PEG-POD NPs are promising vehicles for ocular drug delivery.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S71198
PMCID: PMC4315550
peptide for ocular delivery; flurbiprofen; controlled release; ocular tolerance; anti-inflammatory
9.  Acid-triggered core cross-linked nanomicelles for targeted drug delivery and magnetic resonance imaging in liver cancer cells 
Purpose
To research the acid-triggered core cross-linked folate-poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly[N-(N′,N′-diisopropylaminoethyl) glutamine] (folated-PEG-P[GA-DIP]) amphiphilic block copolymer for targeted drug delivery and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in liver cancer cells.
Methods
As an appropriate receptor of protons, the N,N-diisopropyl tertiary amine group (DIP) was chosen to conjugate with the side carboxyl groups of poly(ethylene glycol)-b-poly (L-glutamic acid) to obtain PEG-P(GA-DIP) amphiphilic block copolymers. By ultrasonic emulsification, PEG-P(GA-DIP) could be self-assembled to form nanosized micelles loading doxorubicin (DOX) and superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) in aqueous solution. When PEG-P(GA-DIP) nanomicelles were combined with folic acid, the targeted effect of folated-PEG-P(GA-DIP) nanomicelles was evident in the fluorescence and MRI results.
Results
To further increase the loading efficiency and the cell-uptake of encapsulated drugs (DOX and SPIONs), DIP (pKa≈6.3) groups were linked with ~50% of the side carboxyl groups of poly(L-glutamic acid) (PGA), to generate the core cross-linking under neutral or weakly acidic conditions. Under the acidic condition (eg, endosome/lysosome), the carboxyl groups were neutralized to facilitate disassembly of the P(GA-DIP) blocks’ cross-linking, for duly accelerating the encapsulated drug release. Combined with the tumor-targeting effect of folic acid, specific drug delivery to the liver cancer cells and MRI diagnosis of these cells were greatly enhanced.
Conclusion
Acid-triggered and folate-decorated nanomicelles encapsulating SPIONs and DOX, facilitate the targeted MRI diagnosis and therapeutic effects in tumors.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S45767
PMCID: PMC3746790  PMID: 23976852
acid-triggered; DOX; nanomicelle carrier; folate-targeted effect; SPIONs
10.  Synthesis, characterization, and evaluation of paclitaxel loaded in six-arm star-shaped poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) 
Background
Star-shaped polymers provide more terminal groups, and are promising for application in drug-delivery systems.
Methods
A new series of six-arm star-shaped poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (6-s-PLGA) was synthesized by ring-opening polymerization. The structure and properties of the 6-s-PLGA were characterized by carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, infrared spectroscopy, gel permeation chromatography, and differential scanning calorimetry. Then, paclitaxel-loaded six-arm star-shaped poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) nanoparticles (6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs) were prepared under the conditions optimized by the orthogonal testing. High-performance liquid chromatography was used to analyze the nanoparticles’ encapsulation efficiency and drug-loading capacity, dynamic light scattering was used to determine their size and size distribution, and transmission electron microscopy was used to evaluate their morphology. The release performance of the 6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs in vitro and the cytostatic effect of 6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs were investigated in comparison with paclitaxel-loaded linear poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) nanoparticles (L-PLGA-PTX-NPs).
Results
The results of carbon-13 nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and infrared spectroscopy suggest that the polymerization was successfully initiated by inositol and confirm the structure of 6-s-PLGA. The molecular weights of a series of 6-s-PLGAs had a ratio corresponding to the molar ratio of raw materials to initiator. Differential scanning calorimetry revealed that the 6-s-PLGA had a low glass transition temperature of 40°C–50°C. The 6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs were monodispersed with an average diameter of 240.4±6.9 nm in water, which was further confirmed by transmission electron microscopy. The encapsulation efficiency of the 6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs was higher than that of the L-PLGA-PTX-NPs. In terms of the in vitro release of nanoparticles, paclitaxel (PTX) was released more slowly and more steadily from 6-s-PLGA than from linear poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid). In the cytostatic study, the 6-s-PLGA-PTX-NPs and L-PLGA-PTX-NPs were found to have a similar antiproliferative effect, which indicates durable efficacy due to the slower release of the PTX when loaded in 6-s-PLGA.
Conclusion
The results suggest that 6-s-PLGA may be promising for application in PTX delivery to enhance sustained antiproliferative therapy.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S51629
PMCID: PMC3825676  PMID: 24235829
PTX; polymer; drug delivery; nanoparticles; PLGA; antiproliferative therapy
11.  Preparation and in vitro characterization of 9-nitrocamptothecin-loaded long circulating nanoparticles for delivery in cancer patients 
The purpose in this study was to investigate poly(ethylene glycol)-modified poly (d,l-lactide-co-glycolide) nanoparticles (PLGA-PEG-NPs) loading 9-nitrocamptothecin (9-NC) as a potent anticancer drug. 9-NC is an analog of the natural plant alkaloid camptothecin that has shown high antitumor activity and is currently in the end stage of clinical trial. Unfortunately, at physiological pH, these potent agents undergo a rapid and reversible hydrolysis with the loss of antitumor activity. Previous researchers have shown that the encapsulation of this drug in PLGA nanoparticles could increase its stability and release profile. In this research we investigated PLGA-PEG nanoparticles and their effect on in vitro characteristics of this labile drug. 9-NC-PLGA-PEG nanoparticles with particle size within the range of 148.5 ± 30 nm were prepared by a nanoprecipitation method. The influence of four different independent variables (amount of polymer, percent of emulsifier, internal phase volume, and external phase volume) on nanoparticle drug-loading was studied. Differential scanning calorimetry and X-ray diffractometry were also evaluated for physical characterizing. The results of optimized formulation showed a narrow size distribution, suitable zeta potential (+1.84), and a drug loading of more than 45%. The in vitro drug release from PLGA-PEG NPs showed a sustained release pattern of up to 120 hours and comparing with PLGA-NPs had a significant decrease in initial burst effect. These experimental results indicate that PLGA-PEG-NPs (versus PLGA-NPs) have a better physicochemical characterization and can be developed as a drug carrier in order to treat different malignancies.
PMCID: PMC2950404  PMID: 20957168
long circulating nanoparticle; 9-nitrocamptothecin; in vitro characterization
12.  Anticancer Activity of Nanoparticles Based on PLGA and its Co-polymer: In-vitro Evaluation  
Attempts have been made to prepare nanoparticles based on poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) and doxorubicin. Biological evaluation and physio-chemical characterizations were performed to elucidate the effects of initial drug loading and polymer composition on nanoparticle properties and its antitumor activity.
PLGA nanoparticles were formulated by sonication method. Lactide/glycolide ratio and doxorubicin amounts have been tailored. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) were employed to identify the presence of doxorubicin within nanospheres. The in vitro release studies were performed to determine the initial ant net release rates over 24 h and 20 days, respectively. Furthermore, cytotoxicity assay was measured to evaluate therapeutic potency of doxorubicin-loaded nanoparticles.
Spectroscopy and thermal results showed that doxorubicin was loaded into the particles successfully. It was observed that lactide/glycolide content of PLGA nanoparticles containing doxorubicin has more prominent role in tuning particle characteristics. Doxorubicin release profiles from PLGA 75 nanospheres demonstrated that the cumulative release rate increased slightly and higher initial burst was detected in comparison to PLGA 50 nanoparticles. MTT data revealed doxorubicin induced antitumor activity was enhanced by encapsulation process, and increasing drug loading and glycolide portion. The results led to the conclusion that by controlling the drug loading and the polymer hydrophilicity, we can adjust the drug targeting and blood clearance, which may play a more prominent role for application in chemotherapy.
PMCID: PMC3920687  PMID: 24523742
Poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid); Doxorubicin; Nanoparticle; Sustained release; Antitumor activity
13.  Preparation and Investigation of Sustained Drug Delivery Systems Using an Injectable, Thermosensitive, In Situ Forming Hydrogel Composed of PLGA–PEG–PLGA 
AAPS PharmSciTech  2012;13(2):590-600.
In situ gelling systems are very attractive for pharmaceutical applications due to their biodegradability and simple manufacturing processes. The synthesis and characterization of thermosensitive poly(d,l-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA)–polyethylene glycol (PEG)–PLGA triblock copolymers as in situ gelling matrices were investigated in this study as a drug delivery system. Ring-opening polymerization using microwave irradiation was utilized as a novel technique, and the results were compared with those using a conventional method of polymerization. The phase transition temperature and the critical micelle concentration (CMC) of the copolymer solutions were determined by differential scanning calorimetry and spectrophotometry, respectively. The size of the micelles was determined with a light scattering method. In vitro drug release studies were carried out using naltrexone hydrochloride and vitamin B12 as model drugs. The rate and yield of the copolymerization process via microwave irradiation were higher than those of the conventional method. The copolymer structure and concentration played critical roles in controlling the sol–gel transition temperature, the CMC, and the size of the nanomicelles in the copolymer solutions. The rate of drug release could be modulated by the molecular weight of the drugs, the concentration of the copolymers, and their structures in the formulations. The amount of release versus time followed zero-order release kinetics for vitamin B12 over 25 days, in contrast to the Higuchi modeling for naltrexone hydrochloride over a period of 17 days. In conclusion, PLGA–PEG1500–PLGA with a lactide-to-glycolide ratio of 5:1 is an ideal system for the long-acting, controlled release of naltrexone hydrochloride and vitamin B12.
doi:10.1208/s12249-012-9781-8
PMCID: PMC3364385  PMID: 22528547
hydrogel; naltrexone; PLGA–PEG–PLGA; thermosensitive; triblock copolymer; vitamin B12
14.  Encapsulation of Alpha-1 antitrypsin in PLGA nanoparticles: In Vitro characterization as an effective aerosol formulation in pulmonary diseases 
Background
Alpha 1- antitrypsin (α1AT) belongs to the superfamily of serpins and inhibits different proteases. α1AT protects the lung from cellular inflammatory enzymes. In the absence of α1AT, the degradation of lung tissue results to pulmonary complications. The pulmonary route is a potent noninvasive route for systemic and local delivery. The aerosolized α1AT not only affects locally its main site of action but also avoids remaining in circulation for a long period of time in peripheral blood. Poly (D, L lactide-co glycolide) (PLGA) is a biodegradable and biocompatible polymer approved for sustained controlled release of peptides and proteins. The aim of this work was to prepare a wide range of particle size as a carrier of protein-loaded nanoparticles to deposit in different parts of the respiratory system especially in the deep lung. Various lactide to glycolide ratio of the copolymer was used to obtain different release profile of the drug which covers extended and rapid drug release in one formulation.
Results
Nonaqueous and double emulsion techniques were applied for the synthesis of nanoparticles. Nanoparticles were characterized in terms of surface morphology, size distribution, powder X-ray diffraction (XRD), encapsulation efficiency, in vitro drug release, FTIR spectroscopy and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). To evaluate the nanoparticles cytotoxicity, cell cytotoxicity test was carried out on the Cor L105 human epithelial lung cancer cell line.
Nanoparticles were spherical with an average size in the range of 100 nm to 1μ. The encapsulation efficiency was found to be higher when the double emulsion technique was applied. XRD and DSC results indicated that α1AT encapsulated in the nanoparticles existed in an amorphous or disordered-crystalline status in the polymer matrix. The lactic acid to glycolic acid ratio affects the release profile of α1AT. Hence, PLGA with a 50:50 ratios exhibited the ability to release %60 of the drug within 8, but the polymer with a ratio of 75:25 had a continuous and longer release profile. Cytotoxicity studies showed that nanoparticles do not affect cell growth and were not toxic to cells.
Conclusion
In summary, α1AT-loaded nanoparticles may be considered as a novel formulation for efficient treatment of many pulmonary diseases.
doi:10.1186/1477-3155-10-20
PMCID: PMC3485170  PMID: 22607686
Cytotoxicity; DSC (differential scanning calorimetry); FTIR; Nanoparticle; Sustained drug release; XRD (x-ray diffraction)
15.  Biological evaluation of 5-fluorouracil nanoparticles for cancer chemotherapy and its dependence on the carrier, PLGA 
Nanoscaled devices have great potential for drug delivery applications due to their small size. In the present study, we report for the first time the preparation and evaluation of antitumor efficacy of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)-entrapped poly (D, L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles with dependence on the lactide/glycolide combination of PLGA. 5-FU-loaded PLGA nanoparticles with two different monomer combinations, 50-50 and 90-10 were synthesized using a modified double emulsion method, and their biological evaluation was done in glioma (U87MG) and breast adenocarcinoma (MCF7) cell lines. 5-FU-entrapped PLGA 50-50 nanoparticles showed smaller size with a high encapsulation efficiency of 66%, which was equivalent to that of PLGA 90-10 nanoparticles. Physicochemical characterization of nanoparticles using differential scanning calorimetry and X-ray diffraction suggested the presence of 5-FU in molecular dispersion form. In vitro release studies showed the prolonged and sustained release of 5-FU from nanoparticles with both the PLGA combinations, where PLGA 50-50 nanoparticles showed faster release. Nanoparticles with PLGA 50-50 combination exhibited better cytotoxicity than free drug in a dose- and time-dependent manner against both the tumor cell lines. The enhanced efficiency of PLGA 50-50 nanoparticles to induce apoptosis was indicated by acridine orange/ethidium bromide staining. Cell cycle perturbations studied using flow cytometer showed better S-phase arrest by nanoparticles in comparison with free 5-FU. All the results indicate that PLGA 50-50 nanoparticles possess better antitumor efficacy than PLGA 90-10 nanoparticles and free 5-FU. Since, studies have shown that long-term exposure of ailing tissues to moderate drug concentrations is more favorable than regular administration of higher concentration of the drug; our results clearly indicate the potential of 5-FU-loaded PLGA nanoparticles with dependence on carrier combination as controlled release formulation to multiplex the therapeutic effect of cancer chemotherapy.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S20165
PMCID: PMC3184929  PMID: 21980233
5-FU; poly (D, L-lactic-co-glycolic acid); controlled release
16.  Suitable carriers for encapsulation and distribution of endostar: comparison of endostar-loaded particulate carriers 
Background
Particulate carriers are necessary to control the release of endostar and prolong its circulation in vivo. The purpose of this study was to identify a suitable carrier for the capsulation and delivery of endostar.
Methods
We prepared a series of poly (DL-lactide-co-glycolide) (PLGA) and poly (ethylene glycol) (PEG)-modified PLGA (PEG-PLGA) particulate carriers, and then characterized them according to their ability to prolong the circulation of endostar, their physicochemical properties, endostar-loading content, and in vitro and in vivo particulate carrier release profiles.
Results
All the particulate carriers had spherical core shell structures. The PEG-PLGA material and nanosize range appeared to enable the carriers to encapsulate more endostar, release endostar faster in vitro, and accumulate more endostar in vivo. The drug loading capacity of PEG-PLGA and PLGA nanoparticles was 8.03% ± 3.41% and 3.27% ± 5.26%, respectively, and for PEG-PLGA and PLGA microspheres was 15.32% ± 5.61% and 9.21% ± 4.73%. The cumulative amount of endostar released from the carriers in phosphate-buffered saline over 21 days was 23.79%, 20.45%, 15.13%, and 10.41%, respectively. Moreover, the terminal elimination half-life of endostar in the rabbit was 26.91 ± 7.93 hours and 9.32 ± 5.53 hours in the PEG-PLGA group and the PLGA nanoparticle group. Peak endostar concentration was reached at day 7 in the group treated with subcutaneous injection of PEG-PLGA microspheres and at day 14 in the group receiving subcutaneous injection of PLGA microspheres. Endostar was detectable in vivo in both groups after injection of the particulate carriers.
Conclusion
PEG-PLGA nanoparticles might be better than other nanoparticulate carriers for encapsulation and distribution of endostar.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S21881
PMCID: PMC3152471  PMID: 21845043
poly(DL-lactide-co-glycolide); nanoparticle; microsphere; endostar; peptide delivery
17.  Mouse lymphatic endothelial cell targeted probes: anti-LYVE-1 antibody-based magnetic nanoparticles 
Purpose
To investigate the specific targeting property of lymphatic vessel endothelial hyaluronan receptor-1 binding polyethylene glycol-coated ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide (LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO) nanoparticles to mouse lymphatic endothelial cells (MLECs).
Methods
A ligand specific target to lymphatic vessels was selected by immunohistochemical staining on the sections of a Lewis subcutaneous transplanted tumor. The z-average hydrodynamic diameter (HD), zeta potential, and the relaxivity of PEG-USPIO and LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO nanoparticles were determined with a laser particle analyzer and magnetic resonance T2 spin echo sequence, respectively. Prussian blue staining and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) of nanoparticle labeled cells were performed to determine the nanoparticles’ binding form. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was performed in vitro to evaluate the signal enhancement on the T2 spin echo sequence of the nanoparticle labeled cells. The iron content of the labeled cells after the Prussian blue staining and MRI scanning was determined by atomic absorption spectroscopy (AAS).
Results
The anti-LYVE-1 antibody was used as the specific ligand to synthesize the target probe to the MLECs. The mean z-average HDs of the LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO and PEG-USPIO nanoparticles were 57.42 ± 0.31 nm and 47.91 ± 0.73 nm, respectively, and the mean zeta potentials of the LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO and PEG-USPIO nanoparticles were 12.38 ± 4.87 mV and 2.57 ± 0.83 m V, respectively. The relaxivities of the LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO and PEG-USPIO nanoparticles were 185.48 mM−1s−1 and 608.32 mM−1s−1. Cells binding nanoparticles were visualized as blue granules in the Prussian blue staining. The TEM results of the labeled cells showed the specific localization of nanoparticles. The AAS results of labeled cells after the Prussian blue staining and MRI scanning showed that the LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO nanoparticles had good binding selectivity for MLECs. MRI results indicated that the PEG-USPIO and LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO nanoparticles could generate contrast on T2-weighted imaging, and the correlation between R2 and the iron content of the labeled cells was significantly positive.
Conclusion
This study demonstrated that LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO nanoparticles might potentially be used as an MRI contrast agent for targeting MLECs, and the magnetic properties of LYVE-1-PEG-USPIO nanoparticles were suitable for MRI.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S45817
PMCID: PMC3693816  PMID: 23818783
nanoparticles; lymphatic vessel endothelial hyaluronan receptor-1 (LYVE-1); ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide (USPIO); mouse lymphatic endothelial cells (MLECs); magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
18.  Formulation of polylactide-co-glycolic acid nanospheres for encapsulation and sustained release of poly(ethylene imine)-poly(ethylene glycol) copolymers complexed to oligonucleotides 
Antisense oligonucleotides (AOs) have been shown to induce dystrophin expression in muscles cells of patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD) and in the mdx mouse, the murine model of DMD. However, ineffective delivery of AOs limits their therapeutic potential. Copolymers of cationic poly(ethylene imine) (PEI) and non-ionic poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) form stable nanoparticles when complexed with AOs, but the positive surface charge on the resultant PEG-PEI-AO nanoparticles limits their biodistribution. We adapted a modified double emulsion procedure for encapsulating PEG-PEI-AO polyplexes into degradable polylactide-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) nanospheres. Formulation parameters were varied including PLGA molecular weight, ester end-capping, and sonication energy/volume. Our results showed successful encapsulation of PEG-PEI-AO within PLGA nanospheres with average diameters ranging from 215 to 240 nm. Encapsulation efficiency ranged from 60 to 100%, and zeta potential measurements confirmed shielding of the PEG-PEI-AO cationic charge. Kinetic measurements of 17 kDa PLGA showed a rapid burst release of about 20% of the PEG-PEI-AO, followed by sustained release of up to 65% over three weeks. To evaluate functionality, PEG-PEI-AO polyplexes were loaded into PLGA nanospheres using an AO that is known to induce dystrophin expression in dystrophic mdx mice. Intramuscular injections of this compound into mdx mice resulted in over 300 dystrophin-positive muscle fibers distributed throughout the muscle cross-sections, approximately 3.4 times greater than for injections of AO alone. We conclude that PLGA nanospheres are effective compounds for the sustained release of PEG-PEI-AO polyplexes in skeletal muscle and concomitant expression of dystrophin, and may have translational potential in treating DMD.
doi:10.1186/1477-3155-7-1
PMCID: PMC2671478  PMID: 19351396
19.  Synthesis, characterization and in vitro studies of doxorubicin-loaded magnetic nanoparticles grafted to smart copolymers on A549 lung cancer cell line 
Background
The aim of present study was to develop the novel methods for chemical and physical modification of superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) with polymers via covalent bonding entrapment. These modified SPIONs were used for encapsulation of anticancer drug doxorubicin.
Method
At first approach silane–grafted magnetic nanoparticles was prepared and used as a template for polymerization of the N-isopropylacrylamide (NIPAAm) and methacrylic acid (MAA) via radical polymerization. This temperature/pH-sensitive copolymer was used for preparation of DOX–loaded magnetic nanocomposites. At second approach Vinyltriethoxysilane-grafted magnetic nanoparticles were used as a template to polymerize PNIPAAm-MAA in 1, 4 dioxan and methylene-bis-acrylamide (BIS) was used as a cross-linking agent. Chemical composition and magnetic properties of Dox–loaded magnetic hydrogel nanocomposites were analyzed by FT-IR, XRD, and VSM.
Results
The results demonstrate the feasibility of drug encapsulation of the magnetic nanoparticles with NIPAAm–MAA copolymer via covalent bonding. The key factors for the successful prepardtion of magnetic nanocomposites were the structure of copolymer (linear or cross-linked), concentration of copolymer and concentration of drug. The influence of pH and temperature on the release profile of doxorubicin was examined. The in vitro cytotoxicity test (MTT assay) of both magnetic DOx–loaded nanoparticles was examined. The in vitro tests showed that these systems are no toxicity and are biocompatible.
Conclusion
IC50 of DOx–loaded Fe3O4 nanoparticles on A549 lung cancer cell line showed that systems could be useful in treatment of lung cancer.
doi:10.1186/1477-3155-10-46
PMCID: PMC3605180  PMID: 23244711
Superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs); Drug loading efficiency; Radical polymerization; N-Isopropylacrylamide-methyl metacrylc acid (NIPAAm-MAA)
20.  Effects of the Incorporation of a Hydrophobic Middle Block into a PEG-Polycation Diblock Copolymer on the Physicochemical and Cell Interaction Properties of the Polymer-DNA Complexes 
Biomacromolecules  2008;9(11):3294-3307.
One-component homopolymers of cationic monomers (polycations) and diblock copolymers comprising poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) and a polycation block have been the most widely used types of polymers for formulation of polymer-based gene delivery systems. In this study, we incorporate a hydrophobic middle block into the conventional PEG-polycation architecture, and investigate the effects of this hydrophobic modification on the physicochemical and cell-level biological properties of the polymer-DNA complexes that are relevant to gene delivery applications. The ABC-type triblock copolymer used in this study consists of (A) PEG, (B) hydrophobic poly(n-butyl acrylate) (PnBA) and (C) cationic poly(2-(dimethylamino)ethyl methacrylate) (PDMAEMA) component polymers. The properties of the triblock copolymer/DNA complexes are compared with those of two other, more conventional DNA carriers derived, respectively, using a PDMAEMA homopolymer and a PEG-PDMAEMA diblock copolymer having comparable molecular weights for individual blocks. The PEG-PnBA-PDMAEMA polymer forms, in aqueous solution, positively-charged spherical micelles. The electrostatic complexation of these micelles with plasmid DNA molecules results in the formation of stable small-size DNA particles coated with a micelle monolayer, as confirmed by agarose gel electrophoresis, dynamic light scattering (DLS) and cryogenic transmission electron microscopy (cryo-TEM). Proton nuclear magnetic resonance (1H NMR) spectroscopy measurements indicate that the whole micelle-DNA assembly (named for convenience as “micelleplex”) is shielded predominantly by the PEG chains. DLS and optical microscopy imaging measurements indicate that in comparison with PDMAEMA/DNA polyplexes, the micelleplexes have a significantly lower tendency to aggregate under physiological salt concentrations, and show reduced interactions with negatively-charged components in serum such as albumin and erythrocytes. While the micelleplexes are comparable with the PEG-PDMAEMA-based DNA polyplexes in terms of their stability against aggregation under high salt concentrations and in the presence of the albumin protein, they have a slightly higher tendency to interact with erythrocytes than the diblock copolymer polyplexes. Agarose gel electrophoresis measurements indicate that relative to the PEG-PDMAEMA polyplexes, the micelleplexes provide better protection of the encapsulated DNA from enzymatic degradation, and also exhibit greater stability against disintegration induced by polyanionic additives; in these respects, the PDMAEMA homopolymer-based polyplexes show the best performance. In vitro studies in HeLa cells indicate that the PDMAEMA polyplexes show the highest gene transfection efficiency among the three different gene delivery systems. Between the micelleplexes and PEG-PDMAEMA polyplexes, a higher gene transfection efficiency is observed with the latter system. All three formulations show comparable levels of cytotoxicity in HeLa cells.
doi:10.1021/bm800876v
PMCID: PMC3339030  PMID: 18942877
21.  Novel docetaxel-loaded nanoparticles based on poly(lactide-co-caprolactone) and poly(lactide-co-glycolide-co-caprolactone) for prostate cancer treatment: formulation, characterization, and cytotoxicity studies 
Nanoscale Research Letters  2011;6(1):260.
Docetaxel (Dtx) chemotherapy is the optional treatment in patients with hormone-refractory metastatic prostate cancer, and Dtx-loaded polymeric nanoparticles (NPs) have the potential to induce durable clinical responses. However, alternative formulations are needed to overcome the serious side effects, also due to the adjuvant used, and to improve the clinical efficacy of the drug.
In the present study, two novel biodegradable block-copolymers, poly(lactide-co-caprolactone) (PLA-PCL) and poly(lactide-co-caprolactone-co-glycolide) (PLGA-PCL), were explored for the formulation of Dtx-loaded NPs and compared with PLA- and PLGA-NPs. The nanosystems were prepared by an original nanoprecipitation method, using Pluronic F-127 as surfactant agent, and were characterized in terms of morphology, size distribution, encapsulation efficiency, crystalline structure, and in vitro release. To evaluate the potential anticancer efficacy of a nanoparticulate system, in vitro cytotoxicity studies on human prostate cancer cell line (PC3) were carried out. NPs were found to be of spherical shape with an average diameter in the range of 100 to 200 nm and a unimodal particle size distribution. Dtx was incorporated into the PLGA-PCL NPs with higher (p < 0.05) encapsulation efficiency than that of other polymers. Differential scanning calorimetry suggested that Dtx was molecularly dispersed in the polymeric matrices. In vitro drug release study showed that release profiles of Dtx varied on the bases of characteristics of polymers used for formulation. PLA-PCL and PLGA-PCL drug loaded NPs shared an overlapping release profiles, and are able to release about 90% of drug within 6 h, when compared with PLA- and PLGA-NPs. Moreover, cytotoxicity studies demonstrated advantages of the Dtx-loaded PLGA-PCL NPs over pure Dtx in both time- and concentration-dependent manner. In particular, an increase of 20% of PC3 growth inhibition was determined by PLGA-PCL NPs with respect to free drug after 72 h incubation and at all tested Dtx concentration. In summary, PLGA-PCL copolymer may be considered as an attractive and promising polymeric material for the formulation of Dtx NPs as delivery system for prostate cancer treatment, and can also be pursued as a validated system in a more large context.
doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-260
PMCID: PMC3211323  PMID: 21711774
22.  Folate-targeted polymeric micelles loaded with ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide: combined small size and high MRI sensitivity 
Targeted delivery of contrast agents is a highly desirable strategy for enhancing diagnostic efficiency and reducing side effects and toxicity. Water-soluble and tumor-targeting superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (SPIONs) were synthesized by loading hydrophobic SPIONs into micelles assembled from an amphiphilic block copolymer poly(ethylene glycol)- poly(ɛ-caprolactone) (PEG-PCL) bearing folate in the distal ends of PEG chains. Compared to the water-soluble SPIONs obtained by small molecular surfactant coating, ultrasmall SPION encapsulation with PEG-PCL micelles (PEG-PCL-SPIONs) simultaneously increases transverse (r2) and decreases longitudinal (r1) magnetic resonance (MR) relaxivities of water proton in micelle solution, leading to a notably high r2/r1 ratio up to 78, which makes the PEG-PCL-SPIONs a highly sensitive MR imaging (MRI) T2 contrast agent. The mean size of folate-attached SPION micelles (Fa-PEG-PCL-SPIONs) is 44 ± 3 nm on average, ideal for in vivo MRI applications in which long circulation is greatly determined by small particle size and is highly desirable. Prussian blue staining of BEL-7402 cells over-expressing folate receptors, after incubation with micelle-containing medium, demonstrated that folate functionalization of the magnetic particles significantly enhanced their cell uptake. The potential of Fa-PEG-PCL-SPIONs as a potent MRI probe for in vivo tumor detection was assessed. At 3 hours after intravenous injection of the Fa-PEG-PCL-SPION solution into mice bearing subcutaneous xenografts of human BEL-7402 hepatoma, a 41.2% signal intensity decrease was detected in the T2-weighted MR images of the tumor, indicating the efficient accumulation of Fa-PEG-PCL-SPIONs in the tumor tissue.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S25739
PMCID: PMC3383322  PMID: 22745549
tumor targeting; magnetic resonance imaging; polymeric micelles; superparamagnetic iron oxide
23.  Biodegradable mucus-penetrating nanoparticles composed of diblock copolymers of polyethylene glycol and poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) 
Drug delivery and translational research  2012;2(2):10.1007/s13346-011-0048-9.
Mucus secretions coating entry points to the human body that are not covered by skin efficiently trap and clear conventional drug carriers, limiting controlled drug delivery at mucosal surfaces. To overcome this challenge, we recently engineered nanoparticles that readily penetrate a variety of human mucus secretions, which we termed mucus-penetrating particles (MPP). Here, we report a new biodegradable MPP formulation based on diblock copolymers of poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) and poly(ethylene glycol) (PLGA-PEG). PLGA-PEG nanoparticles prepared by a solvent diffusion method rapidly diffused through fresh, undiluted human cervicovaginal mucus (CVM) with an average speed only eightfold lower than their theoretical speed in water. In contrast, PLGA nanoparticles were slowed more than 12,000-fold in the same CVM secretions. Based on the measured diffusivities, as much as 75% of the PLGA-PEG nanoparticles are expected to penetrate a 10-μm-thick mucus layer within 30 min, whereas virtually no PLGA nanoparticles are expected to do so over the same duration. These results encourage further development of PLGA-PEG nanoparticles as mucus-penetrating drug carriers for improved drug and gene delivery to mucosal surfaces.
doi:10.1007/s13346-011-0048-9
PMCID: PMC3818113  PMID: 24205449
Drug delivery; Human mucus; Mucus-penetrating particles
24.  Detection of PLGA-based nanoparticles at a single-cell level by synchrotron radiation FTIR spectromicroscopy and correlation with X-ray fluorescence microscopy 
Poly-lactide-co-glycolide (PLGA) is one of the few polymers approved by the US Food and Drug Administration as a carrier for drug administration in humans; therefore, it is one of the most used materials in the formulation of polymeric nanoparticles (NPs) for therapeutic purposes. Because the cellular uptake of polymeric NPs is a hot topic in the nanomedicine field, the development of techniques able to ensure incontrovertible evidence of the presence of NPs in the cells plays a key role in gaining understanding of their therapeutic potential. On the strength of this premise, this article aims to evaluate the application of synchrotron radiation-based Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (SR-FTIR) spectromicroscopy and SR X-ray fluorescence (SR-XRF) microscopy in the study of the in vitro interaction of PLGA NPs with cells. To reach this goal, we used PLGA NPs, sized around 200 nm and loaded with superparamagnetic iron oxide NPs (PLGA-IO-NPs; Fe3O4; size, 10–15 nm). After exposing human mesothelial (MeT5A) cells to PLGA-IO-NPs (0.1 mg/mL), the cells were analyzed after fixation both by SR-FTIR spectromicroscopy and SR-XRF microscopy setups. SR-FTIR-SM enabled the detection of PLGA NPs at single-cell level, allowing polymer detection inside the biological matrix by the characteristic band in the 1,700–2,000 cm−1 region. The precise PLGA IR-signature (1,750 cm−1 centered pick) also was clearly evident within an area of high amide density. SR-XRF microscopy performed on the same cells investigated under SR-FTIR microscopy allowed us to put in evidence the Fe presence in the cells and to emphasize the intracellular localization of the PLGA-IO-NPs. These findings suggest that SR-FTIR and SR-XRF techniques could be two valuable tools to follow the PLGA NPs’ fate in in vitro studies on cell cultures.
doi:10.2147/IJN.S58685
PMCID: PMC4057326  PMID: 24944512
PLGA-NPs; cell targeting; SR-FTIR; SR-XRF; imaging
25.  Adjuvant Chemotherapy for Brain Tumors Delivered via a Novel Intra-Cavity Moldable Polymer Matrix 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(10):e77435.
Introduction
Polymer-based delivery systems offer innovative intra-cavity administration of drugs, with the potential to better target micro-deposits of cancer cells in brain parenchyma beyond the resected cavity. Here we evaluate clinical utility, toxicity and sustained drug release capability of a novel formulation of poly(lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA)/poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) microparticles.
Methods
PLGA/PEG microparticle-based matrices were molded around an ex vivo brain pseudo-resection cavity and analyzed using magnetic resonance imaging and computerized tomography. In vitro toxicity of the polymer was assessed using tumor and endothelial cells and drug release from trichostatin A-, etoposide- and methotrexate-loaded matrices was determined. To verify activity of released agents, tumor cells were seeded onto drug-loaded matrices and viability assessed.
Results
PLGA/PEG matrices can be molded around a pseudo-resection cavity wall with no polymer-related artifact on clinical scans. The polymer withstands fractionated radiotherapy, with no disruption of microparticle structure. No toxicity was evident when tumor or endothelial cells were grown on control matrices in vitro. Trichostatin A, etoposide and methotrexate were released from the matrices over a 3-4 week period in vitro and etoposide released over 3 days in vivo, with released agents retaining cytotoxic capabilities. PLGA/PEG microparticle-based matrices molded around a resection cavity wall are distinguishable in clinical scanning modalities. Matrices are non-toxic in vitro suggesting good biocompatibility in vivo. Active trichostatin A, etoposide and methotrexate can be incorporated and released gradually from matrices, with radiotherapy unlikely to interfere with release.
Conclusion
The PLGA/PEG delivery system offers an innovative intra-cavity approach to administer chemotherapeutics for improved local control of malignant brain tumors.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0077435
PMCID: PMC3796488  PMID: 24155955

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