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Ultralow-intensity NIR light triggered on-demand drug release by employing highly emissive UCNP and photocleavable linker with low bond dissociation energy

Authors Shi J, Zhao Z, Liu Z, Wu R, Wang Y

Received 18 January 2019

Accepted for publication 21 April 2019

Published 31 May 2019 Volume 2019:14 Pages 4017—4028

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S201982

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Linlin Sun


Junhui Shi,1 Zhengyan Zhao,2 Zongjun Liu,3 Ruozheng Wu,1 You Wang1

1School of Materials Science and Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150001, People’s Republic of China; 2State Key Laboratory of Fine Chemicals, Dalian University of Technology, Dalian 116024, People’s Republic of China; 3School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin 150001, People’s Republic of China

Background: The design of novel nanoparticles with higher therapeutic efficacy and lower side effects, is still difficult but encouraging in cancer therapy. Specifically, for upconversion nanoparticles (UCNP)-based drug release, a high intensity of NIR light (1.4∼5.0 W/cm2,) above the maximum permissible exposure (0.33 W/cm2, for 980 nm) is commonly used and severely limits its practical application.
Methods: The highly emissive UCNP is first synthesized and then coated with mesoporous silica (MS) shell (UCMS). Next, the surface of UCMS is modified with the thioether (-S-BP) linker, leading to UCMS-S-BP nanoparticles. Finally, after the drug doxorubicin (Dox) is loaded into the pore channels of UCMS, the pore openings are blocked by the β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) gatekeeper through the association with the -S-BP linker (UCMS(Dox)-S-BP@β-CD).
Results: Upon 980 nm NIR light irradiation with an ultralow intensity of 0.30 W/cm,2 it is found that the loaded Dox can be released through the cleavage of thioether linkers triggering dissociation of β-CD gatekeepers. The in vitro results exhibited significantly therapeutic efficacy with 85.2% of HeLa cells killed in this study.
Conclusions: An ultralow-intensity NIR light triggered on-demand drug release system has been developed by employing highly emissive UCNP and photocleavable linker with low bond dissociation energy to avoid the potential photodamage on healthy neighbor cells.

Keywords: drug release, ultralow intensity, density functional theory, near infrared light, upconversion nanoparticles

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