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Stealth, biocompatible monoolein-based lyotropic liquid crystalline nanoparticles for enhanced aloe-emodin delivery to breast cancer cells: in vitro and in vivo studies

Authors Freag M, Elnaggar Y, Abdelmonsif D, Y. Abdallah O

Received 30 April 2016

Accepted for publication 10 June 2016

Published 20 September 2016 Volume 2016:11 Pages 4799—4818

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S111736

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Dr Thomas Webster


May S Freag,1 Yosra SR Elnaggar,1,2 Doaa A Abdelmonsif,3 Ossama Y Abdallah1

1Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy, Alexandria University, 2Department of Pharmaceutics, Faculty of Pharmacy and Drug Manufacturing, Pharos University in Alexandria, 3Department of Medical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt

Abstract: Recently, research has progressively highlighted on clues from conventional use of herbal medicines to introduce new anticancer drugs. Aloe-emodin (AE) is a herbal drug with promising anticancer activity. Nevertheless, its clinical utility is handicapped by its low solubility. For the first time, this study aims to the fabrication of surface-functionalized polyethylene glycol liquid crystalline nanoparticles (PEG-LCNPs) of AE to enhance its water solubility and enable its anticancer use. Developed AE-PEG-LCNPs were optimized via particle size and zeta potential measurements. Phase behavior, solid state characteristics, hemocompatibility, and serum stability of LCNPs were assessed. Sterile formulations were developed using various sterilization technologies. Furthermore, the potential of the formulations was investigated using cell culture, pharmacokinetics, biodistribution, and toxicity studies. AE-PEG-LCNPs showed particle size of 190 nm and zeta potential of -49.9, and PEGylation approach reduced the monoolein hemolytic tendency to 3% and increased the serum stability of the nanoparticles. Sterilization of liquid and lyophilized AE-PEG-LCNPs via autoclaving and γ-radiations, respectively, insignificantly affected the physicochemical properties of the nanoparticles. Half maximal inhibitory concentration of AE-PEG-LCNPs was 3.6-fold lower than free AE after 48 hours and their cellular uptake was threefold higher than free AE after 24-hour incubation. AE-PEG-LCNPs presented 5.4-fold increase in t1/2 compared with free AE. Biodistribution and toxicity studies showed reduced AE-PEG-LCNP uptake by reticuloendothelial system organs and good safety profile. PEGylated LCNPs could serve as a promising nanocarrier for efficient delivery of AE to cancerous cells.

Keywords: aloe-emodin, anticancer, breast cancer cell line, liquid crystalline nanoparticles, monoolein, pharmacokinetics

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