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Biomaterials. 2005 May;26(15):2723-32.

Preparation and characterisation of antibody modified gelatin nanoparticles as drug carrier system for uptake in lymphocytes.

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Institut für Pharmazeutische Technologie, Biozentrum Niederursel, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-Universität, Marie-Curie-Strasse 9, Frankfurt am Main D-60439, Germany.


Established methods of protein chemistry can be used for the effective attachment of drug targeting ligands to the surface of protein-based nanoparticles. In the present work gelatin nanoparticles were used for the attachment of biotinylated anti-CD3 antibodies by avidin-biotin-complex formation. These antibody modified nanoparticles represent a promising carrier system for the specific drug targeting to T-lymphocytes. The objective of this work was the comprehensive quantification of every chemical reaction step during the preparation procedure of these cell specific nanoparticles. Gelatin nanoparticles were formed by a two-step desolvation process. After the first desolvation step the remaining sediment and the supernatant were analysed for molecular weight distribution by size exclusion chromatography (SEC). Nanoparticles then were formed using the high molecular gelatin fraction and subsequently were stabilised by glutaraldehyde crosslinking. A part of the detectable amino groups on the particle surface was reacted with 2-iminothiolane in order to introduce reactive sulfhydryl groups. The thiolated nanoparticles were coupled to NeutrAvidin (NAv) which previously was activated with the heterobifunctional crosslinker sulfo-MBS. All these reaction steps were quantified by photometry or gravimetry. The functionality of NAv after covalent conjugation was confirmed by a biotin-4-fluorescein assay. The NAv-modified nanoparticles then were used for the binding of biotinylated anti-CD3 antibodies by avidin-biotin-complex formation. A highly effective attachment of the ligand was ascertained by different, indirect methods: immunoblotting and fluorimetry. Therefore, a well-defined nanoparticle system with drug targeting ligand modification was established that holds promise for further effective preclinical testing.

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