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Int J Nanomedicine. 2017 Oct 11;12:7433-7451. doi: 10.2147/IJN.S141787. eCollection 2017.

Application of multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes in the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer.

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School of Pharmacy, Liaoning University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Dalian.
Department of Pharmaceutical Engineering, Beijing Institute of Petrochemical Technology, Beijing, China.


Chemotherapy for aggressive non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) usually results in a poor prognosis due to tumor metastasis, vasculogenic mimicry (VM) channels, limited killing of tumor cells, and severe systemic toxicity. Herein, we developed a kind of multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes to enhance antitumor efficacy for NSCLC. In the liposomes, octreotide was modified on liposomal surface for obtaining a receptor-mediated targeting effect, and honokiol was incorporated into the lipid bilayer for inhibiting tumor metastasis and eliminating VM channels. In vitro cellular assays showed that multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes not only exhibited the strongest cytotoxic effect on Lewis lung tumor cells but also showed the most efficient inhibition on VM channels. Action mechanism studies showed that multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes could downregulate PI3K, MMP-2, MMP-9, VE-Cadherin, and FAK and activate apoptotic enzyme caspase 3. In vivo results exhibited that multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes could accumulate selectively in tumor site and display an obvious antitumor efficacy. In addition, no significant toxicity of blood system and major organs was observed at a test dose. Therefore, multifunctional targeting epirubicin liposomes may provide a safe and efficient therapy strategy for NSCLC.


chemotherapy; honokiol; octreotide; targeting drug delivery; tumor metastasis; vasculogenic mimicry

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