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Folate-modified lipid–polymer hybrid nanoparticles for targeted paclitaxel delivery

Authors Zhang L, Zhu D, Dong X, Sun H, Song C, Wang C, Kong D

Received 17 November 2014

Accepted for publication 22 January 2015

Published 16 March 2015 Volume 2015:10(1) Pages 2101—2114

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S77667

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Lei Yang

Linhua Zhang,1 Dunwan Zhu,1 Xia Dong,1 Hongfan Sun,1 Cunxian Song,1 Chun Wang,2 Deling Kong1

1Tianjin Key Laboratory of Biomaterials, Institute of Biomedical Engineering, Peking Union Medical College and Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Tianjin, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, USA

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to develop a novel lipid–polymer hybrid drug carrier comprised of folate (FA) modified lipid-shell and polymer-core nanoparticles (FLPNPs) for sustained, controlled, and targeted delivery of paclitaxel (PTX). The core-shell NPs consist of 1) a poly(ε-caprolactone) hydrophobic core based on self-assembly of poly(ε-caprolactone)–poly(ethylene glycol)–poly(ε-caprolactone) (PCL-PEG-PCL) amphiphilic copolymers, 2) a lipid monolayer formed with 1,2-distearoyl-sn-glycero-3-phosphoethanolamine-N-[methoxy (polyethylene glycol)-2000] (DSPE-PEG2000), 3) a targeting ligand (FA) on the surface, and were prepared using a thin-film hydration and ultrasonic dispersion method. Transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering analysis confirmed the coating of the lipid monolayer on the hydrophobic polymer core. Physicochemical characterizations of PTX-loaded FLPNPs, such as particle size and size distribution, zeta potential, morphology, drug loading content, encapsulation efficiency, and in vitro drug release, were also evaluated. Fluorescent microscopy proved the internalization efficiency and targeting ability of the folate conjugated on the lipid monolayer for the EMT6 cancer cells which overexpress folate receptor. In vitro cytotoxicity assay demonstrated that the cytotoxic effect of PTX-loaded FLPNPs was lower than that of Taxol®, but higher than that of PTX-loaded LPNPs (without folate conjugation). In EMT6 breast tumor model, intratumoral administration of PTX-loaded FLPNPs showed similar antitumor efficacy but low toxicity compared to Taxol®. More importantly, PTX-loaded FLPNPs showed greater tumor growth inhibition (65.78%) than the nontargeted PTX-loaded LPNPs (48.38%) (P<0.05). These findings indicated that the PTX loaded-FLPNPs with mixed lipid monolayer shell and biodegradable polymer core would be a promising nanosized drug formulation for tumor-targeted therapy.

Keywords: lipid–polymer hybrid nanoparticles, paclitaxel, drug delivery, PCL-PEG-PCL, folate
 

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