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Lipid–Polymer Hybrid Nanoparticle-Based Combination Treatment with Cisplatin and EGFR/HER2 Receptor-Targeting Afatinib to Enhance the Treatment of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma

Authors Fu D, Li C, Huang Y

Received 14 October 2020

Accepted for publication 1 March 2021

Published 9 April 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 2449—2461


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Nicola Silvestris

Dehui Fu, Chao Li, Yongwang Huang

Department of Ear-Nose-Throat (ENT), The Second Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin, 300211, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence: Yongwang Huang
Department of Ear-Nose-Throat, The Second Hospital of Tianjin Medical University, No. 23 Pingjiang Road, Tianjin, 300211, People’s Republic of China
Tel/Fax +86 22-88328701
Email [email protected]

Purpose: Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is one of the most prevalent carcinomas among the Cantonese population of South China and Southeast Asia (responsible for 8% of all cancers in China alone). Although concurrent platinum-based chemotherapy and radiotherapy have been successful, metastatic NPC remains difficult to treat, and the failure rate is high.
Methods: Thus, we developed stable lipid–polymer hybrid nanoparticles (NPs) containing cisplatin (CDDP) and afatinib (AFT); these drugs act synergistically to counter NPC. The formulated nanoparticles were subjected to detailed in vitro and in vivo analysis.
Results: We found that CDDP and AFT exhibited synergistic anticancer efficacy at a specific molar ratio. NPs were more effective than a free drug cocktail (a combination) in reducing cell viability, enhancing apoptosis, inhibiting cell migration, and blocking cell cycling. Cell viability after CDDP monotherapy was as high as 85.1%, but CDDP+AFT (1/1 w/w) significantly reduced viability to 39.5%. At 1 μg/mL, AFT/CDDP-loaded lipid–polymer hybrid NPs (ACD-LP) were significantly more cytotoxic than the CDDP+AFT cocktail, indicating the superiority of the NP system.
Conclusion: The NPs significantly delayed tumor growth compared with either CDDP or AFT monotherapy and were not obviously toxic. Overall, the results suggest that AFT/CDDP-loaded lipid–polymer hybrid NPs exhibit great potential as a treatment for NPC.

Keywords: nasopharyngeal carcinoma, cisplatin, afatinib, nanoparticles, antitumor, apoptosis

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