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J Biomed Mater Res A. 2012 Aug;100(8):1998-2005. doi: 10.1002/jbm.a.34040. Epub 2012 May 5.

Effects of surfactants on the properties of PLGA nanoparticles.

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Department of Bioengineering, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas, USA.


The objective of this study was to investigate the physical characteristics of poly(D,L-lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles (NPs) coated with two surfactants, Pluronic or the commonly used polyvinyl alcohol (PVA); and determine their in vitro efficiency as drug carriers for cancer therapy. Free surfactant cytotoxicity results indicated that Pluronic F127 (PF127) was most cytocompatible among the Pluronics tested and hence chosen for coating PLGA NPs for further studies. Release studies using doxorubicin (DOX) as a drug model showed sustained release of DOX from both PVA- and PF127-coated PLGA NPs (PLGA-PVA and PLGA-PF127, respectively) over 28 days. Further, there was no significant difference in human dermal fibroblasts and human aortic smooth muscle cell survival when exposed to both types of NPs. Cellular uptake studies demonstrated that uptake of both nanoparticle types was dose-dependent for both prostate and breast cancer cells. However, these cancer cells internalized more PLGA-PF127 NPs than PLGA-PVA NPs. Moreover, studies showed that drug-loaded PLGA-PF127 NPs not only killed more cancer cells than drug-loaded PLGA-PVA NPs, but also overcame drug resistance in LNCaP, MDA-MB-231, and MDA-MB-468 cancer cells on re-exposure. These results indicate that PLGA-PF127 NPs can form a promising system that not only delivers anti-cancer drugs, but also overcomes drug resistance, which is prevalent in most cancer cells.

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