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Biomaterials. 2013 Jan;34(4):1364-71. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2012.10.060. Epub 2012 Nov 9.

Biomineralization inspired surface engineering of nanocarriers for pH-responsive, targeted drug delivery.

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State Key Laboratory of Rare Earth Resources Utilization and Laboratory of Chemical Biology, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changchun, Jilin 130022, China.


Recent insight into the molecular mechanisms of natural biomineralization has enabled biomimetic synthesis of functional organic-inorganic hybrid materials under mild reaction conditions. Here, we describe a novel method to construct organic-inorganic hybrid on mesoporous silica nanoparticles by utilizing electrostatically absorbed hyaluronic acid (HA) as a reaction site for deposition of calcium phosphate (CaP) minerals. The addition of another layer of HA on the CaP surfaces not only stabilizes the nanocomposites but also confers target ability toward CD44 overexpressed cancer cells. The nanomaterials enable controlled release of loaded anticancer drugs in acidic subcellular environments after receptor mediated endocytosis. More importantly, our study demonstrated that the cancer targeting nanomaterials dramatically enhanced cellular uptake and cytotoxicity toward breast carcinoma cells. These results thus open new opportunities for biomineralization guided nanostructure assemblies with great potential for biomedical applications.

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