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Multifunctional theranostic nanoparticles using pH-responsive DNA-nanoparticle conjugate for effective cancer therapy (NP-DNA-NDDS)
Start date: Oct 1, 2013, End date: Sep 30, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide, accounting for 7.6 million deaths in 2008. Although conventional cancer chemotherapy can provide profound benefits, seriously adverse side-effects still cannot be avoided, due to lack of specific targeting nature of current treatments. Nanomedicine can reduce such side-effects by exploiting characteristic properties of tumors for targeted delivery and therapy. Despite extensive research, most nanomedicines developed so far have relied on passive targeting using a single therapeutic modality, which are inefficient for treatment of challenging conditions such as multi-drug resistance.Recently we developed a pH-responsive-DNA-GNP conjugate based nanocarrier that numerous features required for an ideal drug nanocarrier, e.g. uniform small nanoscale size, resisting non-specific adsorption, non-toxic, biocompatible, water-soluble, stable, and having high drug loading and controlled release capacities. It can offer efficient and pH-triggered drug release suitable for effective cancer chemotherapy at the cellular level using doxorubicin, a widely used chemotherapy drug.Herein we will extend it into a more effective, multifunctional nanomedicine that can offer simultaneous biomodal chemotherapies with hyperthermia and MRI imaging capacities. First, we will prepare, characterize, and evaluate their drug loading & release profiles in buffer; then we will study and quantify their cell- & cell-specific- uptake and drug delivery efficiency, and then evaluate their toxicity, cytotoxicity & cell-specific cytotoxicity with cancer cells (incoming phase), and finally evaluate their synergistic therapeutic efficacy at cellular and preclinical level (re-integration phase). This project will greatly benefit both the fundamental research in nanomedicine and the healthcare/pharmaceutical indurstries in Europe.

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