Nanodiamonds are carbon nanoparticles well suited to carry therapeutics as they are non toxic when administered in vivo. Nevertheless, their delivery to target tissues relies on passive mechanisms and, thus, it does not occur in a controlled and consistent manner.
Laura Moore, Northwestern University, USA, and colleagues developed a novel strategy to overcome this issue. The researchers loaded nanodiamonds with the chemotherapeutic drug epirubicin and, subsequently, encapsulated them into lipid membranes composed of phosphatidylcholine, cholesterol, and distearoylphosphoethanolamine-polyethyleneglycol. The scientists then attached the nanodiamonds-containing membranes to antibodies targeting breast cancer cells. In doing so, they obtained nanodiamond-lipid hybrid nanoparticles selectively delivering epirubicin to tumor cells. When administered to cancer-bearing mice, the nanoparticles induced the regression of the tumors and, at the same time, they spared healthy cells from the toxic effects exerted by epirubicin.
- Diamond-Lipid Hybrids Enhance Chemotherapeutic Tolerance and Mediate Tumor Regression,
L. Moore, E. K. Chow, E. Osawa, J. M. Bishop, D. Ho,
Adv. Mat. 2013.