Indexed on: 20 Feb '14Published on: 20 Feb '14Published in: Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences
A liver-targeting drug delivery system for doxorubicin (DOX), that is, DOX-loaded self-assembled nanoparticles based on galactosylated O-carboxymethyl chitosan-graft-stearic acid conjugates (Gal-OS/DOX), has been prepared. The objective of the present study was to investigate the preparation, in vitro release, in vivo pharmacokinetics, and tissue distribution of Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles. The drug-loaded nanoparticles were spherical in shape with mean size of 181.9 nm. In vitro release profiles indicated that the release of DOX from Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles behaved with a sustained and pH-dependent drug release. Pharmacokinetics study revealed Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles exhibited a higher AUC value and a prolonged residence time of drug in the blood circulation than those of DOX solution. Furthermore, Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles increased the uptake of DOX in liver and spleen, but decreased uptake in heart, lung, and kidney in the tissue distribution study. These results suggested that the Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles could prolong blood circulation time, enhance the liver accumulation, and reduce the side effect especially the cardiotoxicity of DOX. In conclusion, Gal-OS/DOX nanoparticles could be a promising drug delivery system for liver cancer therapy.