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J Drug Target. 2014 May;22(4):327-42. doi: 10.3109/1061186X.2013.876645. Epub 2014 Jan 9.

Development of dual responsive nanocomposite for simultaneous delivery of anticancer drugs.

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  • 1Drug Applied Research Center, Tabriz University of Medical Sciences , Tabriz , Iran .


In this paper novel stimuli-responsive cationic mesoporous silica nanoparticles (MSNs) were fabricated through the facile polymerization method. The synthesis process was characterized and validated by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and hydrogen nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. The prepared nanoparticles were characterized using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Zeta potential and thermogravimetric analysis methods. SEM results revealed the uniformity in size and shape of nanoparticles with a mean diameter of approximately 60 nm. Two model anticancer drugs, Doxorubicin (DOX) and Methotroxate (MTX) were loaded effectively to functionalized MSNs through electrostatic interactions. Our developed HPLC-UV method was applied for simultaneous determination of DOX and MTX. Modified MSNs yielded a pH and temperature-triggered release of entrapped drugs at tumor tissue environment (lower pH and higher temperature than physiological condition). In-vitro cytotoxicity assay showed that the blank carrier showed no cytotoxicity on both A549 and MCF7 cells at different amounts after incubation for 72 h confirming its suitability as a drug carrier. Multi anticancer drug-loaded MSNs, in the other hand, caused an efficient anticancer performance verified by DAPI staining and MTT assay tests. It was concluded that our findings may open the possibilities for cooperative thermo and pH-responsive targeted delivery of DOX and MTX to the cancerous tissues.

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