bims-drudre Biomed News
on Targeted drug delivery and programmed release mechanisms
Issue of 2021‒08‒22
eight papers selected by
Ceren Kimna
Technical University of Munich

  1. Small. 2021 Aug 18. e2101332
      Inorganic nanomedicine has attracted increasing attentions in biomedical sciences due to their excellent biocompatibility and tunable, versatile functionality. However, the relatively poor accumulation and retention of these nanomedicines in targeted tissues have often hindered their clinical translation. Herein, highly efficient, targeted delivery, and in situ aggregation of ferrocene (Fc)-capped Au nanoparticles (NPs) are reported to cucurbit[7]uril (CB[7])-capped Fe3 O4 NPs (as an artificial target) that are magnetically deposited into the tumor, driven by strong, multipoint CB[7]-Fc host-guest interactions (here defined as "supramolecular tropism" for the first time), leading to high tumor accumulation and retention of these NPs. The in vitro and in vivo studies demonstrate the precisely controlled, specific accumulation, and retention of Au NPs in the tumor cells and tissue via supramolecular tropism and in situ aggregation, which afford locally enhanced CT imaging of cancer and enable tumor-specific photothermal therapy attributed to the plasmonic coupling effects between adjacent Au NPs within the supramolecular aggregations. This work provides a novel concept of supramolecular tropism, which may drive targeted delivery and enable specific accumulation, retention, and activation of nanomedicine for improved bioimaging and therapy of cancer.
    Keywords:  CT imaging; aggregation; host-guest chemistry; photothermal therapy; supramolecular self-assembly
  2. Nat Commun. 2021 08 16. 12(1): 4964
      Immunological adjuvants are essential for successful cancer vaccination. However, traditional adjuvants have some limitations, such as lack of controllability and induction of systemic toxicity, which restrict their broad application. Here, we present a light-activable immunological adjuvant (LIA), which is composed of a hypoxia-responsive amphiphilic dendrimer nanoparticle loaded with chlorin e6. Under irradiation with near-infrared light, the LIA not only induces tumour cell lysis and tumour antigen release, but also promotes the structural transformation of 2-nitroimidazole containing dendrimer to 2-aminoimidazole containing dendrimer which can activate dendritic cells via the Toll-like receptor 7-mediated signaling pathway. The LIA efficiently inhibits both primary and abscopal tumour growth and induces strong antigen-specific immune memory effect to prevent tumour metastasis and recurrence in vivo. Furthermore, LIA localizes the immunological adjuvant effect at the tumour site. We demonstrate this light-activable immunological adjuvant offers a safe and potent platform for in situ cancer vaccination.
  3. ACS Nano. 2021 Aug 19.
      As a powerful signal amplification tool, the DNA walker has been widely applied to detect rare microRNA (miRNA) in vivo. Despite the significant advances, a near-infrared (NIR) light controllable DNA walker for signal amplification powered by an endogenous initiator has not been realized, which is crucial for spatiotemporal imaging of miRNA in living cells with high sensitivity. Herein, we constructed a NIR-photoactivatable DNA walker system, which was powered by endogenous adenosine triphosphate (ATP) for in situ miRNA imaging with spatial and temporal resolution. The system was very stable with an extremely low fluorescent background for the bioimaging in living cells. We employed upconversion nanoparticles (UCNPs) as the carriers of the DNA probe and transducers of converting NIR to UV light. Coupled with the DNA walker fueled by intracellular ATP, a smart system based on the NIR light initiated DNA walker was successfully developed for precise spatiotemporal control in living cells. Triggered by NIR light, the DNA walker could autonomously and progressively travel along the track with the assistance of intracellular ATP. The system has been successfully applied for in situ miRNA imaging in different cell lines with highly spatial and temporal resolution. This strategy can expand NIR photocontrol the DNA walker for precise imaging in a biological system.
    Keywords:  DNA walker; microRNA; near-infrared light; spatiotemporal imaging; upconversion nanoparticles
  4. Adv Mater. 2021 Aug 15. e2102926
      Preventing deep bacterial infection and simultaneously enhancing osteogenic differentiation are in great demand for osteomyelitis. Microwave (MW) dynamic therapy is attracting attention due to its excellent penetration ability, but the mechanism of MW-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) is still unknown. Herein, MW-responsive engineered pseudo-macrophages (M-Fe3 O4 /Au nanoparticles (NPs)) are fabricated to clear Staphylococcus aureus infections and induce M2 polarization of macrophages to improve osteogenic differentiation of bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) under MW irradiation. Fe3 O4 /Au NPs can generate ·O2 - and heat under MW irradiation in a saline solution, and the mechanism is put forward via finite element modeling and density functional theory calculations. Due to the gap plasmon, electromagnetic hotspots are produced at Fe3 O4 -Au interface at 2.45 GHz. Because of these induced electromagnetic hotspots, the sodium species is field-ionized and subsequently reacts with oxygen to produce ·O2 - . Meanwhile, the Fe3 O4 /Au NPs have a stronger ability than Fe3 O4 NPs to fix oxygen, favoring the production of ROS. Additionally, MW-treated macrophages diminish to secrete inflammatory cytokines, resulting in the decrease of ROS production in MSCs and thus enhancing their osteogenic differentiation. These engineered pseudo-macrophages will be promising for effectively treating bacterial infections and promoting osteoblast differentiation simultaneously in deep tissues under MW irradiation.
    Keywords:  antibacterial properties; engineered macrophages; immunoregulation; microwave therapy; osteomyelitis
  5. Nat Commun. 2021 08 19. 12(1): 5027
      Engineered living materials (ELMs) based on bacterial cellulose (BC) offer a promising avenue for cheap-to-produce materials that can be programmed with genetically encoded functionalities. Here we explore how ELMs can be fabricated in a modular fashion from millimetre-scale biofilm spheroids grown from shaking cultures of Komagataeibacter rhaeticus. Here we define a reproducible protocol to produce BC spheroids with the high yield bacterial cellulose producer K. rhaeticus and demonstrate for the first time their potential for their use as building blocks to grow ELMs in 3D shapes. Using genetically engineered K. rhaeticus, we produce functionalized BC spheroids and use these to make and grow patterned BC-based ELMs that signal within a material and can sense and report on chemical inputs. We also investigate the use of BC spheroids as a method to regenerate damaged BC materials and as a way to fuse together smaller material sections of cellulose and synthetic materials into a larger piece. This work improves our understanding of BC spheroid formation and showcases their great potential for fabricating, patterning and repairing ELMs based on the promising biomaterial of bacterial cellulose.
  6. J Control Release. 2021 Aug 13. pii: S0168-3659(21)00427-2. [Epub ahead of print]338 22-32
      Gene therapy has been introduced as an alternative to radiation and chemical therapy for glioblastoma. Biomimetic nanoparticles coated with cell membranes (CM) have advantages such as high biocompatibility and prolong half-life. To apply CM coated nanoparticles to gene delivery, the polyethylenimine (PEI25k)/plasmid DNA (pDNA) complexes were coated with CM from C6 rat glioblastoma cells. With the CM covering, the PEI25k/pDNA complexes formed stable nanoparticles with negative surface charge. The PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles had high colloidal stability and could be stored for approximately 20 days without aggregation. The transfection efficiency of the PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles was higher than that of the PEI25k/pDNA complex in serum-containing medium. This suggests that serum does not interfere with transfection efficiency of the nanoparticles. Moreover, the PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles had lower toxicity than the PEI25k/DNA complex in vitro and in vivo. The PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles prepared with CMs of different types of cells were transfected into cells. The results showed that the PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles with the C6 CM had the highest transfection efficiency to C6 cells, suggesting the homotypic targeting effect. The therapeutic effects of the nanoparticles were evaluated in intracranial C6 transplanted glioblastoma animal models. The PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles were prepared with herpes simplex virus thymidine kinase plasmid (pHSVtk) and injected into the tumor locally. The results showed that the PEI25k/pHSVtk/CM nanoparticles induced higher HSVtk expression compared with the PEI25k/pHSVtk complex. Furthermore, tumor size was reduced more efficiently by the PEI25k/pHSVtk/CM nanoparticles than by the PEI25k/pHSVtk complex. Overall results indicate that PEI25k/pDNA/CM nanoparticles are suitable for pDNA delivery to glioblastoma.
    Keywords:  Cell membrane; Gene carrier; Gene therapy; Glioblastoma; Ternary complex
  7. ACS Appl Mater Interfaces. 2021 Aug 19.
      Many molecular systems in nature undergo autonomous addition and extraction of components in order to execute diverse functions, which rely on molecular components that can sense, process, and transmit information from the environment. Building artificial molecular systems using a similar strategy may lead to the construction of life-like synthetic materials. Herein, we report the design of a dynamic multicomponent molecular system from DNA self-assembly, which is capable of autonomously adding and extracting molecular components initiated by molecular triggers. Orthogonality was integrated into molecular components by harnessing the design capacity of DNA sequences. As a proof of concept, we built a three-component DNA tubular system, which can selectively add or extract one, two, or three components in an orthogonal and programmable manner. We further demonstrated that molecular extraction may be designed in response to environmental cues such as protons. Moreover, the tubes can be disassembled on demand to facilitate their uptake by cells. This work may prime the design of artificial multicomponent molecular systems with increasing complexity, diversity, and functionality that may guide the development of new synthetic materials beyond DNA self-assembly.
    Keywords:  DNA self-assembly; component addition and extraction; controllable cell uptake; multicomponent molecular systems; pH-responsive system; self-healing
  8. Nat Commun. 2021 08 16. 12(1): 4934
      Rhodopsin (RHO) gene mutations are a common cause of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (ADRP). The need to suppress toxic protein expression together with mutational heterogeneity pose challenges for treatment development. Mirtrons are atypical RNA interference effectors that are spliced from transcripts as short introns. Here, we develop a novel mirtron-based knockdown/replacement gene therapy for the mutation-independent treatment of RHO-related ADRP, and demonstrate efficacy in a relevant mammalian model. Splicing and potency of rhodopsin-targeting candidate mirtrons are initially determined, and a mirtron-resistant codon-modified version of the rhodopsin coding sequence is validated in vitro. These elements are then combined within a single adeno-associated virus (AAV) and delivered subretinally in a RhoP23H knock-in mouse model of ADRP. This results in significant mouse-to-human rhodopsin RNA replacement and is associated with a slowing of retinal degeneration. This provides proof of principle that synthetic mirtrons delivered by AAV are capable of reducing disease severity in vivo.