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Characterization of the Uptake Efficiency and Cytotoxicity of Tetrandrine-Loaded Poly(N-vinylpyrrolidone)-Block-Poly(ε-caprolactone) (PVP-b-PCL) Nanoparticles in the A549 Lung Adenocarcinoma Cell Line

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Tetrandrine (Tet) has been previously reported to induce apoptosis in several cancer cell lines. However, poor Tet solubility has limited its further application. The lipophilicity of Tet suggests that the development of Tet-loaded biodegradable polymeric micelle delivery systems may be possible. In our previous work, we demonstrated the superior antitumor efficiency of Tet-loaded mPEG-PCL nanoparticles (NPs) in colorectal cancer cell lines. In the present study, we report that a spherical core–shell Tet-loaded nanoparticle structure was prepared using a nanoprecipitation method by employing amphiphilic poly(N-vinylpyrrolidone)-block-poly(ε-caprolactone) (PVP-b-PCL) copolymers as drug carriers. Tet was incorporated into the NPs with high encapsulation efficiency and released in a sustained release pattern. Moreover, coumarin-6 (hydrophobic fluorescence)-loaded Tet-NP uptake was shown to be mediated mainly by endocytosis from the NPs and was more efficient than that of rhodamine B (hydrophilic fluorescence)-loaded NP uptake, which was mainly dependent upon infiltration. The endocytic uptake process was blocked by NaN3, a mitochondrial inhibitor. In vitro studies using the A549 cell line demonstrated the superior cytotoxicity and apoptosis induction ability of Tet-NPs in dose- and time-dependent manners compared to free Tet. The data obtained from this study, therefore, not only confirm the potential use of Tet to treat lung cancer but also suggest an effective manner by which to improve the anticancer efficiency of Tet in nano-drug delivery systems.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2016

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  • Journal of Biomedical Nanotechnology (JBN) is a peer-reviewed multidisciplinary journal providing broad coverage in all research areas focused on the applications of nanotechnology in medicine, drug delivery systems, infectious disease, biomedical sciences, biotechnology, and all other related fields of life sciences.
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