Recent studies report curcumin nanoformulation(s) based on polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA), β-cyclodextrin, cellulose, nanogel, and dendrimers to have anticancer potential. However, no comparative data are currently available for the interaction of curcumin nanoformulations with blood proteins and erythrocytes. The objective of this study was to examine the interaction of curcumin nanoformulations with cancer cells, serum proteins, and human red blood cells, and to assess their potential application for in vivo preclinical and clinical studies.
The cellular uptake of curcumin nanoformulations was assessed by measuring curcumin levels in cancer cells using ultraviolet-visible spectrophotometry. Protein interaction studies were conducted using particle size analysis, zeta potential, and Western blot techniques. Curcumin nanoformulations were incubated with human red blood cells to evaluate their acute toxicity and hemocompatibility.
Cellular uptake of curcumin nanoformulations by cancer cells demonstrated preferential uptake versus free curcumin. Particle sizes and zeta potentials of curucumin nanoformulations were varied after human serum albumin adsorption. A remarkable capacity of the dendrimer curcumin nanoformulation to bind to plasma protein was observed, while the other formulations showed minimal binding capacity. Dendrimer curcumin nanoformulations also showed higher toxicity to red blood cells compared with the other curcumin nanoformulations.
PLGA and nanogel curcumin nanoformulations appear to be very compatible with erythrocytes and have low serum protein binding characteristics, which suggests that they may be suitable for application in the treatment of malignancy. These findings advance our understanding of the characteristics of curcumin nanoformulations, a necessary component in harnessing and implementing improved in vivo effects of curcumin.
nanoparticle; curcumin; chemotherapy; cellular uptake; protein binding; hemocompatibility
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States. Conventional therapies cause widespread systemic toxicity and lead to serious side effects which prohibit their long term use. Additionally, in many circumstances tumor resistance and recurrence is commonly observed. Therefore, there is an urgent need to identify suitable anticancer therapies that are highly precise with minimal side effects. Curcumin is a natural polyphenol molecule derived from the Curcuma longa plant which exhibits anticancer, chemo-preventive, chemo- and radio-sensitization properties. Curcumin’s widespread availability, safety, low cost and multiple cancer fighting functions justify its development as a drug for cancer treatment. However, various basic and clinical studies elucidate curcumin’s limited efficacy due to its low solubility, high rate of metabolism, poor bioavailability and pharmacokinetics. A growing list of nanomedicine(s) using first line therapeutic drugs have been approved or are under consideration by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to improve human health. These nanotechnology strategies may help to overcome challenges and ease the translation of curcumin from bench to clinical application. Prominent research is reviewed which shows that advanced drug delivery of curcumin (curcumin nanoformulations or curcumin nanomedicine) is able to leverage therapeutic benefits by improving bioavailability and pharmacokinetics which in turn improves binding, internalization and targeting of tumor(s). Outcomes using these novel drug delivery systems have been discussed in detail. This review also describes the tumor-specific drug delivery system(s) that can be highly effective in destroying tumors. Such new approaches are expected to lead to clinical trials and to improve cancer therapeutics.
Nanotechnology; curcumin nanomedicine; drug delivery; cancer therapy; chemo-prevention; and tumor targeting
We have developed a multi-layer approach for the synthesis of water-dispersible superparamagnetic iron oxide nanoparticles for hyperthermia, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and drug delivery applications. In this approach, iron oxide core nanoparticles were obtained by precipitation of iron salts in the presence of ammonia and provided β-cyclodextrin and pluronic polymer (F127) coatings. This formulation (F127250) was highly water dispersible which allowed encapsulation of the anti-cancer drug(s) in β-cyclodextrin and pluronic polymer for sustained drug release. The F127250 formulation has exhibited superior hyperthermia effects over time under alternating magnetic field compared to pure magnetic nanoparticles (MNP) and β-cyclodextrin coated nanoparticles (CD200). Additionally, the improved MRI characteristics were also observed for the F127250 formulation in agar gel and in cisplatin resistant ovarian cancer cells (A12780CP) compared to MNP and CD200 formulations. Furthermore, the drug loaded formulation of F127250 exhibited many folds of imaging contrast properties. Due to the internalization capacity of the F127250 formulation, its curcumin loaded formulation (F127250-CUR) exhibited almost equivalent inhibition effects on A2780CP (ovarian), MDA-MB-231 (breast), and PC3 (prostate) cancer cells even though curcumin release was only 40%. The improved therapeutic effects were verified by examining molecular effects using Western blotting and transmission electron microscopic (TEM) studies. F127250-CUR also exhibited haemocompatibility, suggesting a nanochemo-therapuetic agent for cancer therapy.
Magnetic nanoparticles; multi-layer coating; MRI; drug delivery; hyperthermia
Curcumin, a natural diphenolic compound derived from turmeric Curcuma longa, has proven to be a modulator of intracellular signaling pathways that control cancer cell growth, inflammation, invasion, apoptosis and cell death, revealing its anticancer potential. In this review, we focus on the design and development of nanoparticles, self-assemblies, nanogels, liposomes and complex fabrication for sustained and efficient curcumin delivery. We also discuss the anticancer applications and clinical benefits of nanocurcumin formulations. Only a few novel multifunctional and composite nanosystem strategies offer simultaneous therapy as well as imaging characteristics. We also summarize the challenges to developing curcumin delivery platforms and up-to-date solutions for improving curcumin bioavailability and anticancer potential for therapy.
Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cancer among women and causes more deaths than any other type of female reproductive cancer. Currently, treatment of ovarian cancer is based on the combination of surgery and chemotherapy. While recurrent ovarian cancer responds to additional chemotherapy treatments, the progression-free interval becomes shorter after each cycle, as chemo-resistance increases until the disease becomes incurable. There is, therefore, a strong need for prognostic and predictive markers to help optimize and personalize treatment in order to improve the outcome of ovarian cancer. An increasing number of studies indicate an essential role for microRNAs in ovarian cancer progression and chemo-resistance. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small endogenous non-coding RNAs (~22bp) which are frequently dysregulated in cancer. Typically, miRNAs are involved in crucial biological processes, including development, differentiation, apoptosis and proliferation. Two families of miRNAs, miR-200 and let-7, are frequently dysregulated in ovarian cancer and have been associated with poor prognosis. Both have been implicated in the regulation of epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, a cellular transition associated with tumor aggressiveness, tumor invasion and chemo-resistance. Moreover, miRNAs also have possible implications for improving cancer diagnosis; for example miR-200 family, let-7 family, miR-21 and miR-214 may be useful in diagnostic tests to help detect ovarian cancer at an early stage. Additionally, the use of multiple target O-modified antagomirs (MTG-AMO) to inhibit oncogenic miRNAs and miRNA replacement therapy for tumor suppressor miRNAs are essential tools for miRNA based cancer therapeutics. In this review we describe the current status of the role miRNAs play in ovarian cancer and focus on the possibilities of microRNA-based therapies and the use of microRNAs as diagnostic tools.
Ovarian cancer; miRNAs; Chemoresistance; Diagnosis; Prognosis; Therapy; miR-200; Let-7
The next generation magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) with theranostic applications have attracted significant attention and will greatly improve nanomedicine in cancer therapeutics. Such novel MNP formulations must have ultra-low particle size, high inherent magnetic properties, effective imaging, drug targeting, and drug delivery properties. To achieve these characteristic properties, a curcumin-loaded MNP (MNP-CUR) formulation was developed.
MNPs were prepared by chemical precipitation method and loaded with curcumin (CUR) using diffusion method. The physicochemical properties of MNP-CUR were characterized using dynamic light scattering, transmission electron microscopy, and spectroscopy. The internalization of MNP-CUR was achieved after 6 hours incubation with MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells. The anticancer potential was evaluated by a tetrazolium-based dye and colony formation assays. Further, to prove MNP-CUR results in superior therapeutic effects over CUR, the mitochondrial membrane potential integrity and reactive oxygen species generation were determined. Magnetic resonance imaging capability and magnetic targeting property were also evaluated.
MNP-CUR exhibited individual particle grain size of ~9 nm and hydrodynamic average aggregative particle size of ~123 nm. Internalized MNP-CUR showed a preferential uptake in MDA-MB-231 cells in a concentration-dependent manner and demonstrated accumulation throughout the cell, which indicates that particles are not attached on the cell surface but internalized through endocytosis. MNP-CUR displayed strong anticancer properties compared to free CUR. MNP-CUR also amplified loss of potential integrity and generation of reactive oxygen species upon treatment compared to free CUR. Furthermore, MNP-CUR exhibited superior magnetic resonance imaging characteristics and significantly increased the targeting capability of CUR.
MNP-CUR exhibits potent anticancer activity along with imaging and magnetic targeting capabilities. This approach can be extended to preclinical and clinical use and may have importance in cancer treatment and cancer imaging in the future. Further, if these nanoparticles can functionalize with antibody/ligands, they will serve as novel platforms for multiple biomedical applications.
magnetic nanoparticles; drug delivery systems; magnetic resonance imaging; nanomedicine; cancer therapeutics; biomedical applications
Pancreatic cancer is the fourth leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. Identifying novel chemotherapeutic and chemopreventive approaches is critical in the prevention and treatment of cancers such as pancreatic cancer. Vitamin E succinate (VES) is a redox-silent analog of the fat-soluble vitamin alpha-tocopherol. In the present study, we explored the antiproliferative action of VES and its effects on inhibitor of apoptosis proteins in pancreatic cancer cells. We show that VES inhibits cell proliferation and induces apoptosis in pancreatic cancer cells. Further, we demonstrate that VES downregulates the expression of survivin and X-linked inhibitor of apoptosis proteins. The apoptosis induced by VES was augmented by siRNA-mediated inhibition of survivin in PANC-1 cells. In summary, our results suggest that VES targets survivin signaling and induces apoptosis in pancreatic cancer cells.
Vitamin E; Vitamin E succinate; Survivin; Pancreatic cancer; Apoptosis
High-risk strains of human papillomavirus (HPV) cause cervical cancer. American Indian (AI) women in the Northern Plains of the U.S. have significantly higher incidence and mortality rates for cervical cancer than White women in the same geographical area. We compared HPV prevalence, patterns of HPV types, and infection with multiple HPV types in AI and White women living in South Dakota, U.S.
We analyzed the HPV status of cervical samples collected in 2006-2008 from women aged 18-65 years who attended two rural AI reservation clinics (n = 235) or an urban clinic in the same area serving mostly White women (n = 246). Data collection occurred before HPV vaccination was available to study participants. HPV DNA was amplified by using the L1 consensus primer system and an HPV Linear Array detection assay to identify HPV types. We used chi-square tests to compare HPV variables, with percentages standardized by age and lifetime number of sexual partners.
Compared to White women, AI women were younger (p = 0.01) and reported more sexual partners (p < 0.001). A lower percentage of AI women tested negative for HPV infection compared to Whites (58% [95% CI = 51-65] vs. 77% [95% CI = 71-82]; p < 0.001), and a higher percentage of AI women were infected by oncogenic types (30% [95% CI = 25-36] vs. 16% [95% CI = 11-21]; p = 0.001). Infections among AI women showed a wider variety and very different pattern of HPV types, including a higher prevalence of mixed HPV infections (19% [95% CI = 26-38] vs. 7% [95% CI = 4-11]; p = 0.001). AI women had a higher percentage of HPV infections that were not preventable by HPV vaccination (32% [95% CI = 26-38] vs. 15% [95% CI = 11-21]; p < 0.001).
A higher HPV burden and a different HPV genotyping profile may contribute to the high rate of cervical cancer among AI women.
cervical cancer; Pap screening; HPV genotypes; American Indians; health disparities; human papillomavirus; types
Protein kinase D1 (PKD1), founding member of PKD protein family, is down-regulated in advanced prostate cancer (PCa). We demonstrate that PKD1 and androgen receptor (AR) are present as a protein complex in PCa cells. PKD1 is associated with a transcriptional complex which contains AR and promoter sequence of the Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) gene. Ectopic expression of wild type PKD1 and the kinase dead mutant PKD1 (K628W) attenuated the ligand-dependent transcriptional activation of AR in prostate cancer cells and yeast cells indicating that PKD1 can affect AR transcription activity, whereas knocking down PKD1 enhanced the ligand-dependent transcriptional activation of AR. Co-expression of kinase dead mutant with AR significantly inhibited androgen-mediated cell proliferation in both LNCaP and DU145 PC cells. Our data demonstrate for the first time that PKD1 can influence AR function in PCa cells.
Protein kinase D1; Androgen receptor; Interaction; Prostate cancer
This review describes the use of polymer micelle nanotechnology based chemotherapies for ovarian cancer. While various chemotherapeutic agents can be utilized to improve the survival rate of patients with ovarian cancer, their distribution throughout the entire body results in high normal organ toxicity. Polymer micelle nanotechnology aims to improve the therapeutic efficacy of anti-cancer drugs while minimizing the side effects. Herein, different types of polymer micelle technology based nanotherapies such as PLGA, polymerosomes, acid cleavable, thermosensitive, pH sensitive, and cross-linked micelles are introduced and structural differences are explained. Additionally, production methods, stability, sustainability, drug incorporation and drug release profiles of various polymer micelle based nanoformulations are discussed. An important feature of polymer micelle nanotechnology is the small size (10-100 nm) of particles which improves circulation and enables superior accumulation of the therapeutic drugs at the tumor sites. This review provides a comprehensive evaluation of different types of polymer micelles and their implications in ovarian cancer therapeutics.
Chemo/radio-resistance is a major obstacle in treating advanced ovarian cancer. The efficacy of current treatments may be improved by increasing the sensitivity of cancer cells to chemo/radiation therapies. Curcumin is a naturally occurring compound with anti-cancer activity in multiple cancers; however, its chemo/radio-sensitizing potential is not well studied in ovarian cancer. Herein, we demonstrate the effectiveness of a curcumin pre-treatment strategy for chemo/radio-sensitizing cisplatin resistant ovarian cancer cells. To improve the efficacy and specificity of curcumin induced chemo/radio sensitization, we developed a curcumin nanoparticle formulation conjugated with a monoclonal antibody specific for cancer cells.
Cisplatin resistant A2780CP ovarian cancer cells were pre-treated with curcumin followed by exposure to cisplatin or radiation and the effect on cell growth was determined by MTS and colony formation assays. The effect of curcumin pre-treatment on the expression of apoptosis related proteins and β-catenin was determined by Western blotting or Flow Cytometry. A luciferase reporter assay was used to determine the effect of curcumin on β-catenin transcription activity. The poly(lactic acid-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticle formulation of curcumin (Nano-CUR) was developed by a modified nano-precipitation method and physico-chemical characterization was performed by transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering methods.
Curcumin pre-treatment considerably reduced the dose of cisplatin and radiation required to inhibit the growth of cisplatin resistant ovarian cancer cells. During the 6 hr pre-treatment, curcumin down regulated the expression of Bcl-XL and Mcl-1 pro-survival proteins. Curcumin pre-treatment followed by exposure to low doses of cisplatin increased apoptosis as indicated by annexin V staining and cleavage of caspase 9 and PARP. Additionally, curcumin pre-treatment lowered β-catenin expression and transcriptional activity. Nano-CUR was successfully generated and physico-chemical characterization of Nano-CUR indicated an average particle size of ~70 nm, steady and prolonged release of curcumin, antibody conjugation capability and effective inhibition of ovarian cancer cell growth.
Curcumin pre-treatment enhances chemo/radio-sensitization in A2780CP ovarian cancer cells through multiple molecular mechanisms. Therefore, curcumin pre-treatment may effectively improve ovarian cancer therapeutics. A targeted PLGA nanoparticle formulation of curcumin is feasible and may improve the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of curcumin.
MUC4, a high–molecular weight transmembrane glycoprotein, is overexpressed in pancreatic cancer and is implicated in its pathogenesis. It is a heterodimeric protein containing a large extracellular, heavily glycosylated subunit, MUC4α, and a transmembrane growth factor–like subunit, MUC4β. In the present study, we have shown the interaction of human MUC4 with the receptor tyrosine kinase HER2 in pancreatic adenocarcinoma cells by reciprocal coimmunoprecipitation and cocapping studies. MUC4 colocalized with HER2 at the cell surface and in the cytoplasm. Silencing of MUC4 by transient or stable expression of MUC4-targeted short-interfering RNA led to the down-regulation of HER2 with a concomitant decrease in its phosphorylated form (pY1248-HER2). Further analyses revealed that the MUC4-knockdown–mediated decrease in HER2 expression occurred due to the drop in the stability of the receptor. In MUC4-knockdown pancreatic cancer cells, we also observed a reduced phosphorylation of the focal adhesion kinase and p42/44 mitogen-activated protein kinase, which are downstream effector proteins in HER2 signaling. Our findings add a new dimension to MUC4 function as a modulator of cell signaling and provide mechanistic evidence for its role in pancreatic cancer progression.
Ovarian cancer is the most lethal gynecologic malignancy and the five-year survival rate is only 35% after diagnosis. Epithelial ovarian cancer is a highly metastatic disease characterized by widespread peritoneal dissemination and ascites. The death incidences from ovarian cancer could be significantly lowered by developing new methods for the early diagnosis and treatment of this fatal disease. Several potential markers have been identified recently. However, mucins are the most promising markers for ovarian cancer diagnosis. Mucins are large extracellular, heavily glycosylated proteins and their aberrant expression has been implicated in the pathogenesis of a variety of cancers, including ovarian cancer. This review will summarize known facts about the pathological and molecular characteristics of ovarian cancer, the current status of ovarian cancer markers, as well as general information about mucins, the putative role of mucins in the progression of ovarian cancer and their potential use for the early diagnosis and treatment of this disease.
Cervical cancer is the leading gynecological malignancy worldwide, and the incidence of this disease is very high in American Indian women. Infection with the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is responsible for more than 95% of cervical squamous carcinomas. Therefore, the main objective of this study was to analyze oncogenic HPV infections in American Indian women residing in the Northern Plains.
Cervical samples were collected from 287 women attending a Northern Plains American Indian reservation outpatient clinic. DNA was extracted from the cervical samples and HPV specific DNA were amplified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) using the L1 consensus primer sets. The PCR products were hybridized with the Roche HPV Line Blot assay for HPV genotyping to detect 27 different low and high-risk HPV genotypes. The chi-square test was performed for statistical analysis of the HPV infection and cytology diagnosis data.
Of the total 287 patients, 61 women (21.25%) tested positive for HPV infection. Among all HPV-positive women, 41 (67.2%) were infected with high-risk HPV types. Of the HPV infected women, 41% presented with multiple HPV genotypes. Additionally, of the women infected with oncogenic HPV types, 20 (48.7%) were infected with HPV 16 and 18 and the remaining 21 (51.3%) were infected with other oncogenic types (i.e., HPV59, 39, 73). Women infected with oncogenic HPV types had significantly higher (p=0.001) abnormal Papanicolaou smear tests (Pap test) compared to women who were either HPV negative or positive for non-oncogenic HPV types. The incidence of HPV infection was inversely correlated (p<0.05) with the age of the patients, but there was no correlation (p=0.33) with seasonal variation.
In this study, we observed a high prevalence of HPV infection in American Indian women residing on Northern Plains Reservations. In addition, a significant proportion of the oncogenic HPV infections were other than HPV16 and 18.
Human Papillomavirus; American Indian; Northern Plains; Cervical cancer; Cervical cancer diagnosis
Prostate cancer (PCa) is the most common type of cancer in men in the United States, which disproportionately affects African American descents. While metastasis is the most common cause of death among PCa patients, no specific markers have been assigned to severity and ethnic biasness of the disease. MicroRNAs represent a promising new class of biomarkers owing to their inherent stability and resilience. In the present study, we investigated potential miRNAs that can be used as biomarkers and/or therapeutic targets and can provide insight into the severity and ethnic biasness of PCa. PCR array was performed in FFPE PCa tissues (5 Caucasian American and 5 African American) and selected differentially expressed miRNAs were validated by qRT-PCR, in 40 (15 CA and 25 AA) paired PCa and adjacent normal tissues. Significantly deregulated miRNAs were also analyzed in urine samples to explore their potential as non-invasive biomarker for PCa. Out of 8 miRNAs selected for validation from PCR array data, miR-205 (p<0.0001), mir-214 (p<0.0001), miR-221(p<0.001) and miR-99b (p<0.0001) were significantly downregulated in PCa tissues. ROC curve shows that all four miRNAs successfully discriminated between PCa and adjacent normal tissues. MiR-99b showed significant down regulation (p<0.01) in AA PCa tissues as compared to CA PCa tissues and might be related to the aggressiveness associated with AA population. In urine, miR-205 (p<0.05) and miR-214 (p<0.05) were significantly downregulated in PCa patients and can discriminate PCa patients from healthy individuals with 89% sensitivity and 80% specificity. In conclusion, present study showed that miR-205 and miR-214 are downregulated in PCa and may serve as potential non-invasive molecular biomarker for PCa.
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer affecting 1 in 6 males in the US. Understanding the molecular basis of prostate cancer progression can serve as a tool for early diagnosis and development of novel treatment strategies for this disease. Protein Kinase D1 (PKD1) is a multifunctional kinase that is highly expressed in normal prostate. The decreased expression of PKD1 has been associated with the progression of prostate cancer. Therefore, synthetic or natural products that regulate this signaling pathway can serve as novel therapeutic modalities for prostate cancer prevention and treatment. Curcumin, the active ingredient of turmeric, has shown anti-cancer properties via modulation of a number of different molecular pathways. Herein, we have demonstrated that curcumin activates PKD1, resulting in changes in β-catenin signaling by inhibiting nuclear β-catenin transcription activity and enhancing the levels of membrane β-catenin in prostate cancer cells. Modulation of these cellular events by curcumin correlated with decreased cell proliferation, colony formation and cell motility and enhanced cell-cell aggregation in prostate cancer cells. In addition, we have also revealed that inhibition of cell motility by curcumin is mediated by decreasing the levels of active cofilin, a downstream target of PKD1. The potent anti-cancer effects of curcumin in vitro were also reflected in a prostate cancer xenograft mouse model. The in vivo inhibition of tumor growth also correlated with enhanced membrane localization of β-catenin. Overall, our findings herein have revealed a novel molecular mechanism of curcumin action via the activation of PKD1 in prostate cancer cells.