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Novel stable cytokine delivery system in physiological pH solution: chitosan oligosaccharide/heparin nanoparticles

Authors Wang B, Tan L, Deng D, Lu T, Zhou C, Li Z, Tang Z, Wu Z, Tang H

Received 2 February 2015

Accepted for publication 27 March 2015

Published 8 May 2015 Volume 2015:10(1) Pages 3417—3427


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Lei Yang

Bin Wang, Ling Tan, Dengpu Deng, Ting Lu, Changwei Zhou, Zhongkui Li, Zhenjie Tang, Zhongshi Wu, Hao Tang

Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, The Second Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, People’s Republic of China

Background: Cell therapy is a promising strategy for tissue regeneration. Key to this strategy is mobilization and recruitment of exogenous or autologous stem/progenitor cells by cytokines. However, there is no effective cytokine delivery system available for clinic application, in particular for myocardial regeneration. The aim of this study was to develop a novel cytokine delivery system that is stable in solution at physiological pH.
Methods: Four groups of self-assembled chitosan oligosaccharide/heparin (CSO/H) nanoparticles were prepared with various volume ratios of chitosan oligosaccharide to heparin (5:2, 5:4, 4:15, 1:5) and characterized by laser diffraction, particle size analysis, and transmission electron microscopy. The encapsulation efficiency and loading content of two cytokines, ie, stromal cell-derived factor (SDF)-1α and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) were quantified using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The biological activity of the loaded SDF-1α and VEGF was evaluated using the transwell migration assay and MTT assay. The dispersion profiles for the cytokine-loaded nanoparticles were quantified using fluorescence molecular tomography.
Results: CSO/H nanoparticles were prepared successfully in solution with physiological pH. The particle sizes in the four treatment groups were in the range of 96.2–210.5 nm and the zeta potential ranged from -29.4 mV to 24.2 mV. The loading efficiency in the CSO/H nanoparticle groups with the first three ratios was more than 90%. SDF-1α loaded into CSO/H nanoparticles retained its migration activity and VEGF loaded into CSO/H nanoparticles continued to show proliferation activity. The in vivo dispersion test showed that the CSO/H nanoparticles enabled to VEGF to accumulate locally for a longer period of time.
Conclusion: CSO/H nanoparticles have a high cytokine loading capacity and allow cytokines to maintain their bioactivity for longer, are stable in an environment with physiological pH, and may be a promising cytokine delivery system for tissue regeneration.

Keywords: cytokine delivery system, nanoparticles, chitosan oligosaccharide, physiological pH, stromal cell-derived factor-1α, vascular endothelial growth factor

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