Macromolecular science finds stand-in for chemotherapy

Alternative to chemotherapy
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Scientist have created a simple and effective alternative to chemotherapy using multifunctional mesoporous polydopamine with hydrophobic paclitaxel.

Despite many photothermal agents having been loaded with drugs for chemo-photothermal therapy, their application is limited by complex synthetic protocols and long-term safety.

There is a significant clinical value in the development of a simple system of biocompatible and biodegradable photothermal nanomaterials with high payloads of chemotherapeutic drugs for chemo-photothermal synergistic therapy.

Researchers from the State Key Laboratory of Molecular Engineering of Polymers, Department of Macromolecular Science, Fudan University, China, used PEG-modified polydopamine nanoparticles with mesoporous structure (MPDA-PEG) which were successfully obtained by an emulsion-induced interface assembly strategy.

The subsequent paclitaxel (PTX) dissolved in acetone was loaded into to mesoporous channels of MPDA-PEG nanoparticles by solution absorption methods. The researchers then used a PTX-loaded MPDA-PEG (MPDA-PEG-PXT) nanoplatform for combination of photothermal therapy (PTT) and chemotherapy was developed.

The research team’s synthesised MPDA-PEG nanoparticles had strong photothermal effects under near-infrared (NIR) laser irradiation, exhibiting an enhanced photothermal effect with larger particles. The MPDA-PEG nanoparticles also had a high payload of PTX, which could be greatly accelerated by higher temperature from the photothermal effect.

The team of researchers from the State Key Laboratory of Molecular Engineering of Polymers, Department of Macromolecular Science, Fudan University, China, published their findings in the research journal Dovepress. Authors Liren Zhang, Peng Yang, Ranran Guo, Jiaxin Sun and Ruihong Xie, Wuli Yang published their research on November 4, the study highlighted: “In MTT cytotoxicity assay, A549 cells incubated with MPDA-PEG-PTX under NIR laser irradiation (PTT + chemotherapy group) exhibited better therapeutic effect than single chemotherapy (MPDA-PEG-PTX group) and PTT (MPDA-PEG + Laser group).

“The synergistic therapeutic effect of MPDA-PEG-PTX with NIR laser irradiation in vivo was further investigated under the guidance of photoacoustic imaging (PAI), tumors of nude mice treated with MPDA-PEG-PTX with NIR laser irradiation were completely eliminated with minimal side effect.

“The MPDA-PEG-PTX nanoplatform is a simple and effective platform which can completely inhibit tumor growth with minimal side effects under NIR irradiation, and it exhibits better therapeutic effect than single chemotherapy and PTT.”

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