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Issue 38, 2017
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Size dependent targeted delivery of gold nanoparticles modified with the IL-6R-specific aptamer AIR-3A to IL-6R-carrying cells

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Abstract

The delivery of gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) to specific cells strongly depends on the properties e.g. the size of the particles and is of great interest for a large variety of biomedical applications. Here we investigated the size dependence of the receptor–ligand mediated AuNP delivery to cells by comparing very small “molecular” Au-clusters of only 2 nm to larger 7 nm and 36 nm AuNPs with a distinct surface plasmon resonance. Since the molecular weight in this range changes by almost three orders of magnitude, we show how the amount of gold relates to the number of delivered AuNPs. We attached small interleukin-6 receptor (IL-6R) specific aptamer molecules (AIR-3A) in different amounts to the particles and investigated the specificity of the delivery to IL-6R-carrying cells. To reduce unspecific interaction the particles were additionally covered with polyethylene glycol (PEG). Besides particle size and concentration we varied additional parameters such as aptamer surface coverage as well as incubation time and temperature. We found that in particular, small particles with diameters of less than 2 nm show an up to six times higher delivery rate for the aptamer-conjugated AuNPs compared to untargeted PEG-coated AuNPs. The specificity reduces with a decreasing aptamer/PEG ratio, and also with an increase in particle size where the unspecific uptake is much higher. In addition we also compared the delivery efficiency of this aptamer-mediated delivery system with an antibody-mediated system targeting the same receptor to validate the performance of this approach.

Graphical abstract: Size dependent targeted delivery of gold nanoparticles modified with the IL-6R-specific aptamer AIR-3A to IL-6R-carrying cells

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Publication details

The article was received on 26 Apr 2017, accepted on 25 Aug 2017 and first published on 28 Aug 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NR02973J
Citation: Nanoscale, 2017,9, 14486-14498
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    Size dependent targeted delivery of gold nanoparticles modified with the IL-6R-specific aptamer AIR-3A to IL-6R-carrying cells

    L. Prisner, N. Bohn, U. Hahn and A. Mews, Nanoscale, 2017, 9, 14486
    DOI: 10.1039/C7NR02973J

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