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Issue 38, 2017
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X-Ray responsive nanoparticles with triggered release of nitrite, a precursor of reactive nitrogen species, for enhanced cancer radiosensitization

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Abstract

Remotely and locally triggered release of therapeutic species by X-ray irradiation is highly desired to enhance the efficacy of radiotherapy. However, the development of such X-ray responsive nanosystems remains a challenge, especially in response to high energy clinically relevant X-ray radiation. Herein, we report novel nitroimidazole ligated gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) that synergistically function to release nitrite, an important precursor for nitric oxide and reactive nitrogen species that sensitize cancer cells, upon radiation with clinically used 6 MeV X-rays, while no release was detected without radiation. These functional AuNPs were prepared with surface-grafted nitroimidazole as the nitrite-releasing agent, cell-penetrating peptide (CPP) to induce nucleus localization, and poly(ethylene glycol) for water solubility. In vitro radiotherapy using such nanoparticles showed enhanced sensitivity of hypoxic cancer cells to X-ray radiation, presumably due to the generation of both reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. The dose modifying factor (DMF) was found to be 0.71 for the dual-functionalized nanoparticle, which indicates that significant lower X-ray doses are required to achieve the same therapeutic effects. Thus, X-ray triggered nitrite release from gold-nitroimidazole nanosystems offers a novel strategy to sensitize cancer cells for improved radiotherapy.

Graphical abstract: X-Ray responsive nanoparticles with triggered release of nitrite, a precursor of reactive nitrogen species, for enhanced cancer radiosensitization

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Publication details

The article was received on 29 Jun 2017, accepted on 31 Aug 2017 and first published on 31 Aug 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7NR04684G
Citation: Nanoscale, 2017,9, 14627-14634
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    X-Ray responsive nanoparticles with triggered release of nitrite, a precursor of reactive nitrogen species, for enhanced cancer radiosensitization

    F. Liu, J. Lou and D. Hristov, Nanoscale, 2017, 9, 14627
    DOI: 10.1039/C7NR04684G

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