In vivo multimodality imaging of miRNA-16 iron nanoparticle reversing drug resistance to chemotherapy in a mouse gastric cancer model†
miRNA-16 (miR16) plays an important role in modulating the drug resistance of SGC7901 cell lines to adriamycin (ADR). A variety of viral carriers have been designed for miRNA delivery. However, the safety concerns are currently perceived as hampering the clinical application of viral vector-based therapy. Herein a type of magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs) was designed and synthesized using poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG)-coated Fe3O4 nanoparticles as a miRNA delivery system for the purpose of reducing drug resistance of gastric cancer cells by enforcing miR16 expression in SGC7901/ADR cells. The MNPs with good biocompatibility were synthesized by thermal decomposition, and then conjugated with miRNA via electrostatic interaction producing miR16/MNPs. After co-culture with miR16/MNPs, ADR-induced apoptosis of SGC7901/ADR was examined by MTT and TUNEL. miR16/MNPs treatment significantly increased cell apoptosis in vitro. SGC7901/ADRfluc tumor-bearing nude mice under ADR therapy were treated with miR16/MNPs by tail vein injection for in vivo study. After intraperitoneal injection of ADR, tumor volume measurement and fluorescence imaging were performed to for the death of SGC7901/ADR cells in vivo. Results showed that miR16/MNPs were able to significantly suppress SGC7901/ADR tumor growth, probably through increasing SGC7901/ADR cells’ sensitivity to ADR. Our results suggest the efficient delivery of miR16 by MNPs as a novel therapeutic strategy for drug resistant tumor treatment.