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Nano Lett. 2009 May;9(5):1909-15. doi: 10.1021/nl900031y.

Mediating tumor targeting efficiency of nanoparticles through design.

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Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering, Terrence Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research, University of Toronto, 160 College Street, Toronto, ON, M5S 3E1, Canada.


Here we systematically examined the effect of nanoparticle size (10-100 nm) and surface chemistry (i.e., poly(ethylene glycol)) on passive targeting of tumors in vivo. We found that the physical and chemical properties of the nanoparticles influenced their pharmacokinetic behavior, which ultimately determined their tumor accumulation capacity. Interestingly, the permeation of nanoparticles within the tumor is highly dependent on the overall size of the nanoparticle, where larger nanoparticles appear to stay near the vasculature while smaller nanoparticles rapidly diffuse throughout the tumor matrix. Our results provide design parameters for engineering nanoparticles for optimized tumor targeting of contrast agents and therapeutics.

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