The micellar nanoparticles have been decorated with a high-affinity "OA02" peptide against α-3 integrin receptor to improve the tumor-targeting specificity which is overexpressed on the surface of ovarian cancer cells. "Click chemistry" was used to conjugate alkyne-containing OA02 peptide to the azide group at the distal terminus of the PEG chain in a representative PEG(5k)-CA(8) telodendrimer (micelle-forming unit). The conjugation of OA02 peptide had negligible influence on the physicochemical properties of PEG(5k)-CA(8) nanoparticles and as hypothesized, OA02 peptide dramatically enhanced the uptake efficiency of PEG(5k)-CA(8) nanoparticles (NP) in SKOV-3 and ES-2 ovarian cancer cells via receptor-mediated endocytosis, but not in α-3 integrin-negative K562 leukemia cells.
When loaded with paclitaxel, OA02-NPs had significantly higher in vitro cytotoxicity against both SKOV-3 and ES-2 ovarian cancer cells as compared with nontargeted nanoparticles. Furthermore, the in vivo biodistribution study showed OA02 peptide greatly facilitated tumor localization and the intracellular uptake of PEG(5k)-CA(8) nanoparticles into ovarian cancer cells as validated in SKOV3-luc tumor-bearing mice. Finally, paclitaxel (PTX)-loaded OA02-NPs exhibited superior antitumor efficacy and lower systemic toxicity profile in nude mice bearing SKOV-3 tumor xenografts, when compared with equivalent doses of nontargeted PTX-NPs as well as clinical paclitaxel formulation (Taxol). Therefore, OA02-targeted telodendrimers loaded with paclitaxel have great potential as a new therapeutic approach for patients with ovarian cancer.
Cancer Res (1538-7445)
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Medicine, University of California Davis, Sacramento, California 95817, USA.
Cancer Res. 2012 Apr;72(8):2100-10
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