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Intracellular Delivery of Nanoparticles Mediated by Lactoferricin Cell-Penetrating Peptides in an Endocytic Pathway

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Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) containing a preponderance of basic amino acids are able to deliver biologically active macromolecules and nanomaterials into live cells. Quantum dots (QDs) are nanoparticles with unique fluorescence properties that have found wide application in biomedical imaging. In this study, we demonstrate transduction of an L6 CPP (RRWQWR) derived from bovine lactoferricin (LFcin) into human lung cancer cells. L6 noncovalently interacts with QDs to form stable complexes. L6/QD complexes enter cells most efficiently when prepared at a nitrogen/phosphate ratio of 60. Mechanistic studies indicate that L6/QD complexes enter cells by endocytosis. Treatment with 1,2-benzisothiazol-3(2H)-one (BIT), an industrial preservative that enhances uptake of certain CPPs, does not affect L6 CPP-mediated protein transduction efficiency. L6 and L6/QD complexes are not cytotoxic. These results indicate that L6 LFcin might be an efficient and safe nanoshuttle for nanoparticles or nanomedicines in biomedical applications.
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Keywords: Cell-Penetrating Peptides; Lactoferricin; Nanoparticles; Protein Transduction; Quantum Dots

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Studies, National Dong Hwa University, Hualien 97401, Taiwan 2: Department of Biological Sciences, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO 65409-1120, USA 3: College of Science and Technology, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, Bloomsburg, PA 17815-1301, USA

Publication date: 01 February 2019

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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