Hyaluronic acid drug conjugates can target anti-cancer drugs directly to tumor tissue for loco-regional treatment with enhanced bioavailability, local efficacy and reduced toxicity. In this study, the distribution and pharmacokinetics of hyaluronic acid carrier and a conjugated cisplatin anti-cancer drug were tracked by lanthanum (III) [La(III)] affinity tagging of the nanocarrier. The strong binding affinity of La(III) to HA enabled the simple preparation of a physiologically stable complex HA-Pt-La and straightforward simultaneous detection of HA-La and Pt in biological matrices using inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Consequently, after subcutaneous injection of HA-Pt-La nanoparticles in human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) tumor-bearing mice, the HA and Pt content were detected and quantified simultaneously in the plasma, primary tumor, liver and spleen.
Keywords: Biodistribution; Human head and neck squamous cell carcinoma; Hyaluronic acid; Lanthanum.