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Nanoscale. 2014 Nov 7;6(21):12849-55. doi: 10.1039/c4nr04064c.

Injectable small molecule hydrogel as a potential nanocarrier for localized and sustained in vivo delivery of doxorubicin.

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Laboratory of Nanotechnology and Chemical Biology, Regional Centre for Biotechnology, 180 Udyog Vihar, Phase 1, Gurgaon-122016, India.


The majority of the localized drug delivery systems are based on polymeric or polypeptide scaffolds, as weak intermolecular interactions of low molecular weight hydrogelators (LMHGs, Mw <500 Da) are significantly perturbed in the presence of anticancer drugs. Here, we present l-alanine derived low molecular weight hydrogelators (LMHGs) that remain injectable even after entrapping the anticancer drug doxorubicin (DOX). These DOX containing nanoassemblies (DOX-Gel) showed promising anticancer activity in mice models. Subcutaneous injection of DOX-Gel near the tumor achieved a greater decrease in tumour load than by intravenous injection of DOX (DOX-IV), and local injection of DOX alone (DOX-Local) at the tumor site. We noticed that DOX-Gel nanocarriers are especially effective when injected during the early stage of tumor progression, and achieve a substantial decrease in tumor load in the long term.

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