One-step dry synthesis of an iron based nano-biocomposite for controlled release of drugs†
Bio-based drug carriers have gained significant importance in Control Drug Delivery Systems (CDDS). In the present work, a new iron-based magnetic nano bio-composite (nano-Fe-CNB) is developed in a one-step dry calcination process (solventless) using a seaweed-based biopolymer. The detailed analysis of the developed nano Fe-CNB is carried out using FE-SEM, HR-TEM, P-XRD, XPS, Raman spectroscopy, FTIR etc. and shows that nano-Fe-CNB consists of nanoparticles of 5–10 nm decorated on 7–8 nm thick 2-D graphitic carbon material. The impregnation of nano-Fe-CNB into the calcium alginate (CA) hydrogel beads is found to have good drug loading capacity as well as pH responsive control release behavior which is demonstrated using doxorubicin (DOX) as a model cancer drug. The drug loading experiments exhibit ∼94% loading of DOX and release shows ∼38% and ∼8% release of DOX at pH 5.4 and 7.4 respectively. The developed nano Fe-CNB facilitates strong electrostatic interactions with cationic DOX molecules at pH 7.4 and thereby restricts the release of the drug at physiological pH. However, at cancer cell pH (5.4), the interaction between the drug and nano-Fe-CNB reduces which facilitates more drug release at pH 5.4. Thus, the developed nano-biocomposite has the potential to reduce the undesired side effects associated with faster release of drugs.