We have developed a novel, nanosized drug carrier with high-therapeutic payload, controllable release, and the potential for active tumor targeting. It consists of a 15 nm gold nanoparticle with dense surface loading of DNA duplexes. We utilize the natural intercalating behavior of daunomycin to load the drug between DNA base pairs. We obtained a high-therapeutic payload of >1,000 drug molecules per gold nanoparticle (AuNP), one of the highest loadings reported in literature to date. We have engineered unique DNA sequences to control release of daunomycin for over 48 hr and show higher cell death compared to equivalent concentrations of free daunomycin. We have also explored cell internalization mechanisms to identify the pathways by which our gold nanoparticles enter the cell. This nanocarrier is in the ideal size range of 16–100 nm in diameter to utilize the enhanced permeability and retention effect for passive targeting to tumors. Our AuNP platform is effective as a therapeutic drug delivery device and can easily incorporate any aptamer of choice through complementary base pairing. Our work has produced an innovative nanoscale drug-delivery platform potentially leading to personalized cancer therapies through careful selection of aptamers and an adjustable drug release profile.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Ceramics and Composites
- Biomedical Engineering
- Metals and Alloys