An autonomous tumor-targeted nanoprodrug for reactive oxygen species-activatable dual-cytochrome c/doxorubicin antitumor therapy
The precise tumor cell-specific delivery of therapeutic proteins and the elimination of side effects associated with routine chemotherapeutic agents are two current critical considerations for tumor therapy. In this study, we report a reactive oxygen species (ROS)-activated yolk–shell nanoplatform for the tumor-specific co-delivery of cytochrome c (Cyt c) prodrug and doxorubicin, in which the bioactivity of Cyt c could be restored by the intracellular ROS-trigger and readily initiate the sequential doxorubicin release. The DOX-loaded lactobionic acid-modified yolk–shell mesoporous silica nanoparticles were first encapsulated with 4-nitrophenyl 4-(4,4,5,5-tetramethyl-1,3,2-dioxaborolan-2-yl)benzyl carbonate (NBC)-modified Cyt c via boronic ester linkages, and functionalized again with lactobionic acid to further shield Cyt c and confer the selective tumor targeting against liver cancer cells. The key feature in this design is that by taking advantage of the boronic ester linkage, the cytotoxicity of Cyt c capped on the nanoparticle could be temporarily deactivated during blood transportation and rapidly restored upon exposure to the ROS-rich microenvironment within liver cancer cells, thereby simultaneously achieving the protein therapy and stimuli-responsive doxorubicin release. This study presents a novel strategy for the development of tumor-sensitive co-delivery nanoplatforms.
- This article is part of the themed collection: 2018 Nanoscale HOT Article Collection