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Nanoscale. 2011 Oct 5;3(10):4314-22. doi: 10.1039/c1nr10580a. Epub 2011 Sep 5.

Mesoporous silica nanoparticles loading doxorubicin reverse multidrug resistance: performance and mechanism.

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  • 1Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 501 Haike Road, Shanghai 201203, China.


Multidrug resistance (MDR) is one of the major obstacles for successful chemotherapy in cancer. One of the effective approaches to overcome MDR is to use nanoparticle-mediated drug delivery to increase drug accumulation in drug resistant cancer cells. In this work, we first report that the performance and mechanism of an inorganic engineered delivery system based on mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) loading doxorubicin (DMNs) to overcome the MDR of MCF-7/ADR (a DOX-resistant and P-glycoprotein (P-gp) over-expression cancer cell line). The experimental results showed that DMNs could enhance the cellular uptake of doxorubicin (DOX) and increase the cell proliferation suppression effect of DOX against MCF-7/ADR cells. The IC(50) of DMNs against MCF-7/ADR cells was 8-fold lower than that of free DOX. However, an improved effect of DOX in DMNs against MCF-7 cells (a DOX-sensitive cancer cell line) was not found. The increased cellular uptake and nuclear accumulation of DOX delivered by DMNs in MCF-7/ADR cells was confirmed by confocal laser scanning microscopy, and could result from the down-regulation of P-gp and bypassing the efflux action by MSNs themselves. The cellular uptake mechanism of DMNs indicated that the macropinocytosis was one of the pathways for the uptake of DMNs by MCF-7/ADR cells. The in vivo biodistribution showed that DMNs induced a higher accumulation of DOX in drug resistant tumors than free DOX. These results suggested that MSNs could be an effective delivery system to overcome multidrug resistance.

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