Graphene-based hybrid nanoparticle of doxorubicin for cancer chemotherapy

Int J Nanomedicine. 2019 Sep 12:14:7419-7429. doi: 10.2147/IJN.S211224. eCollection 2019.


Background: Prostate cancer (PC) has the highest prevalence in men and accounts for a high rate of neoplasia-related death. Doxorubicin (DOX) is one of the most widely used anti-neoplastic drugs for prostate cancer among others. However, it has low specificity and many side effects and affects normal cells. More recently, there have been newly developed drug delivery tools which are graphene or graphene-based, used to increase the specificity of the delivered drug molecules. The graphene derivatives possess both π-π stacking and increased hydrophobicity, factors that increase the likelihood of drug delivery. Despite this, the hydrophilicity of graphene remains problematic, as it induced problems with stability. For this reason, the use of a chitosan coating remains one way to modify the surface features of graphene.

Method: In this investigation, a hybrid nanoparticle that consisted of a DOX-loaded reduced graphene oxide that is stabilized with chitosan (rGOD-HNP) was developed.

Result: The newly developed rGOD-HNP demonstrated high biocompatibility and efficiency in entrapping DOX (~65%) and releasing it in a controlled manner (~50% release in 48 h). Furthermore, it was also demonstrated that rGOD-HNP can intracellularly deliver DOX and more specifically in PC-3 prostate cancer cells.

Conclusion: This delivery tool offers a feasible and viable method to deliver DOX photo-thermally in the treatment of prostate cancer.

Keywords: HNP; chitosan; graphene; hybrid nanoparticles; photothermal; prostate cancer.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Chitosan / chemistry
  • Doxorubicin / pharmacology
  • Doxorubicin / therapeutic use*
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Drug Liberation
  • Graphite / chemical synthesis
  • Graphite / chemistry*
  • Hemolysis / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Hydrophobic and Hydrophilic Interactions
  • Kinetics
  • Mice
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared
  • Temperature


  • graphene oxide
  • Graphite
  • Doxorubicin
  • Chitosan