Multifunctional organically modified silica nanoparticles for chemotherapy, adjuvant hyperthermia and near infrared imaging

Colloids Surf B Biointerfaces. 2016 Nov 1;147:492-500. doi: 10.1016/j.colsurfb.2016.07.048. Epub 2016 Aug 18.


We report a novel system of organically modified silica nanoparticles (Ormosil) capable of near infrared fluorescence and chemotherapy with adjuvant hyperthermia for image guided cancer therapy. Ormosil nanoparticles were loaded with a chemotherapeutic, Doxorubicin (DOX) and cyanine dye, IR820. Ormosil particles had a mean diameter of 51.2±2.4 nanometers and surface charge of -40.5±0.8mV. DOX was loaded onto Ormosil particles via physical adsorption (FDSIR820) or covalent linkage (CDSIR820) to the silanol groups on the Ormosil surface. Both formulations retained DOX and IR820 over a period of 2 days in aqueous buffer, though CDSIR820 retained more DOX (93.2%) compared to FDSIR820 (77.0%) nanoparticles. Exposure to near infrared laser triggered DOX release from CDSIR820. Uptake of nanoparticles was determined by deconvolution microscopy in ovarian carcinoma cells (Skov-3). CDSIR820 localized in the cell lysosomes whereas cells incubated with FDSIR820 showed DOX fluorescence from the nucleus indicating leakage of DOX from the nanoparticle matrix. FDSIR820 nanoparticles showed severe toxicity in Skov-3 cells whereas CDSIR820 particles had the same cytotoxicity profile as bare (No DOX and IR820) Ormosil particles. Furthermore, exposure of CDSIR820 nanoparticles to Near Infrared laser at 808 nanometers resulted in generation of heat (to 43°C from 37°C) and resulted in enhanced cell killing compared to Free DOX treatment. Bio-distribution studies showed that CDSIR820 nanoparticles were primarily present in the organs of Reticuloendothelial (RES) system.

Keywords: Adjuvant hyperthermia; Doxorubicin; Multifunctional nanoparticles; Near infrared imaging; Ormosil; Silica; Theranostics.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / chemistry
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / pharmacology
  • Cell Survival
  • Doxorubicin / chemistry
  • Doxorubicin / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hyperthermia, Induced*
  • Indocyanine Green / analogs & derivatives
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred ICR
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Molecular Imaging / methods*
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Silicon Dioxide / chemistry*
  • Spectroscopy, Near-Infrared
  • Theranostic Nanomedicine
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured


  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
  • IR 820
  • Silicon Dioxide
  • Doxorubicin
  • Indocyanine Green