Background: We designed dual-functional nanoparticles for in vivo application using a modified electrostatic and covalent layer-by-layer assembly strategy to address the challenge of assessment and treatment of hormone-refractory prostate cancer.
Methods: Core-shell nanoparticles were formulated by integrating three distinct functional components, ie, a core constituted by poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid), docetaxel, and hydrophobic superparamagnetic iron oxide nanocrystals (SPIONs), a multilayer shell formed by poly(allylamine hydrochloride) and two different sized poly(ethylene glycol) molecules, and a single-chain prostate stem cell antigen antibody conjugated to the nanoparticle surface for targeted delivery.
Results: Drug release profiles indicated that the dual-function nanoparticles had a sustained release pattern over 764 hours, and SPIONs could facilitate the controlled release of the drug in vitro. The nanoparticles showed increased antitumor efficiency and enhanced magnetic resonance imaging in vitro through targeted delivery of docetaxel and SPIONs to PC3M cells. Moreover, in nude mice bearing PC3M xenografts, the nanoparticles provided MRI negative contrast enhancement, as well as halting and even reversing tumor growth during the 76-day study duration, and without significant systemic toxicity. The lifespan of the mice treated with these targeted dual-function nanoparticles was significantly increased (Chi-square = 22.514, P < 0.0001).
Conclusion: This dual-function nanomedical platform may be a promising candidate for tumor imaging and targeted delivery of chemotherapeutic agents in vivo.
Keywords: chemotherapy; imaging; nanoparticle; prostate cancer; targeting.