Multi-stimuli-responsive chitosan-functionalized magnetite/poly(ε-caprolactone) nanoparticles as theranostic platforms for combined tumor magnetic resonance imaging and chemotherapy.

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García García, Gracia
Caro, Carlos
Fernández-Álvarez, Fátima
García-Martín, María Luisa


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Nanomedicine: Nanotechnology, Biology and Medicine.
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Chitosan-functionalized magnetite/poly(ε-caprolactone) nanoparticles were formulated by interfacial polymer disposition plus coacervation, and loaded with gemcitabine. That (core/shell)/shell nanostructure was confirmed by electron microscopy, elemental analysis, electrophoretic, and Fourier transform infrared characterizations. A short-term stability study proved the protection against particle aggregation provided by the chitosan shell. Superparamagnetic properties of the nanoparticles were characterized in vitro, while the definition of the longitudinal and transverse relaxivities was an initial indication of their capacity as T2 contrast agents. Safety of the particles was demonstrated in vitro on HFF-1 human fibroblasts, and ex vivo on SCID mice. The nanoparticles demonstrated in vitro pH- and heat-responsive gemcitabine release capabilities. In vivo magnetic resonance imaging studies and Prussian blue visualization of iron deposits in tissue samples defined the improvement in nanoparticle targeting into the tumor when using a magnetic field. This tri-stimuli (magnetite/poly(ε-caprolactone))/chitosan nanostructure could find theranostic applications (biomedical imaging & chemotherapy) against tumors.

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Chitosan, Dual pH- and heat-triggered drug release, Magnetic resonance imaging, Magnetite