Track: Discovery and Basic Research - Pharmaceutics - Drug Delivery Novel Systems
Category: Late Breaking Poster Abstract
Targeted Breast Cancer Therapy Using Nanoparticles Modified by Tumor-Homing Peptides
Purpose: Nanoparticles (NPs) are potential cancer drugs but cannot target cancer cells, causing side effects. To overcome this daunting challenge, the purpose is to develop NPs that can kill breast cancer cells specifically without harming healthy breast cells. Methods: Chemical synthesis of NPs: We synthesized bismuth (Bi) nanocrystals that can absorb biocompatible near infrared (NIR) light to generate heat. We then coated them with a shell of porous silica (SiO2). We finally conjugated a breast tumor-homing peptide (HP) onto the shell, which was further loaded with doxorubicin (DOX). The NPs were suspended in phosphate-buffered saline (pH=7.4).
Cancer cell targeting: We incubated the NPs (fluorescently labeled with N-Hydroxysuccinimide-Fluorescein) with breast cancer cells (MCF7, ATCC® HTB-22™), and verified their cell internalization by confocal microscopy.
Cancer therapy: We used a NIR light (808 nm, 1 W/cm^2) to irradiate the NP-incubated MCF7 cells for 5 min to trigger photothermal therapy in addition to DOX-induced chemotherapy. We verified cell killing by alamarBlue and LIVE/DEAD viability assay. We used normal breast cells (MCF10A, ATCC® CRL-10317™) as a control cell. Results: Electron microscopy confirmed the synthesis of the NPs. The NPs were efficiently internalized in breast cancer cells but not in normal breast cells, enabling them to kill the cancer cells, but not the normal cells, by chemotherapy (the release of DOX inside the cells) and photothermal therapy (the absorption of the NIR light to generate heat). Conclusion: The new NPs can target breast cancer cells and kill them specifically without harming normal breast cells.
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