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Carbohydr Polym. 2012 Sep 1;90(1):16-22. doi: 10.1016/j.carbpol.2012.04.036. Epub 2012 Apr 24.

Preparation and characterization of cationic curcumin nanoparticles for improvement of cellular uptake.

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Department of Prosthodontics, School & Hospital of Stomatology, Whenzhou Medical College, Whenzhou 325027, China.
Department of General Medicine, First Affiliated Hospital, Whenzhou Medical College, Whenzhou 325000, China.


In the present paper, cationic nanoparticles of curcumin, chitosan and poly(ɛ-caprolactone) were developed by a simple nano-precipitation method. The developed curcumin loaded chitosan/poly(ɛ-caprolactone) (chitosan/PCL) nanoparticle showed almost spherical shape and its diameter was varied between 220 nm and 360 nm and zeta potential was varied between +30 mV and 0 mV as a function with pH value. The encapsulation of curcumin into nanoparticles was confirmed by fluorescence spectral analysis. In vitro release study showed the sustained release behavior of curcumin from nanoparticles during the period of 5 days study. In vitro cytotoxicity test revealed the drug concentration dependent on the cell viability against Hela cells and OCM-1 cells after 48 h co-incubation. Furthermore, in vitro cell uptake study revealed that the cell uptake of curcumin was greatly enhanced by encapsulated curcumin into cationic chitosan/PCL nanoparticles. Therefore, the developed cationic chitosan/PCL nanoparticles might be a promising candidate for curcumin delivery to cancer cells.

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