Post Doctoral Researcher, Bio-Nano Electronics Research Centre
Striving for the Evolution of Nano Revolution in Cancer Diagnostics and Treatment
Brain cancer is considered to be one of the most fatal subtype of cancer, primarily due to their position in the body and their highly aggressive nature. Natural physiological barriers such as blood-brain barrier (BBB) guard the brain in a tightly controlled manner, elevating the difficulty levels in treating brain related disorders, including brain tumors. While chemotherapeutics have limited access to tumors and high levels of non-specific toxicity (similar case as radiation therapy), surgery remains the only viable option for such a scenario. Still, the complications associated with surgery and high degree of tumor relapse pose as major hurdles. Nanoformulations are being considered as substantial alternatives to not only efficiently trespass the BBB but also for highly efficient and precision treatment modalities. Of the vastly researched nanoformulations, those composed of biodegradable and biocompatible materials are expected to show better bioavailability with reduced/nil toxicity. Many FDA approved cancer NFs are liposomal variants and are found to be efficient for broad cancer types. We have developed a similar kind of hybrid solid-lipid nanoformulation that has shown excellent safety profile when tested in nude mice. This hybrid nanoformulation exhibited extended blood circulation time, meaning it has more chances of accumulating in tumors translating in better treatment. The formulation, carrying a plant toxin as drug, was decorated with ligands specific for crossing the BBB/angiogenic blood vessels in the tumor and the tumor itself, making it a precisely targeted therapeutic formulation for brain tumor. The preliminary results were astounding with nearly 60% of mice cured of tumors without any relapse, a first of its kind outcome till now. The outstanding results have attracted attention from physicians, neurosurgeons, pharma and analytical companies, highlighting the significance of the study. We propose this formulation with suitable modifications for not only brain tumors, but also other brain neurodegenerative disorders as ischemia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s etc and hard to treat hypoperfused tumors, fibrotic shield tumors etc.
Abstract: Gliomas have been termed recurrent cancers due to their highly aggressive nature. Their tendency to infiltrate and metastasize has posed significant roadblocks to in attaining fool proof treatment solutions. An initiative to curb such a scenario was successfully demonstrated in vitro, utilizing a multi-conceptual gold nanoparticle based photo-thermal and drug combination therapy.Gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) were synthesized with a highly environmentally benign process. The Au NPs were PEGylated and conjugated with folate and transferrin antibody to achieve a dual targeted nano-formulation directed towards gliomas. Curcin, a type 1 ribosome inactivating protein, was attached to the Au NPs as the drug candidate, and its multifarious toxic aspects analyzed in vitro. NIR photo-thermal properties of the Au nano-conjugates were studied to selectively ablate the glioma cancer colonies.Highly cyto-compatible, 10-15nm Au NP conjugates were synthesized with pronounced specificity towards gliomas. Curcin was successfully conjugated to the Au NPs with pH responsive drug release. Prominent toxic aspects of curcin, such as ROS generation, mitochondrial and cytoskeletal destabilization were witnessed. Excellent photo-thermal ablation properties of gold nanoparticles were utilized to completely disrupt the cancer colonies with significant precision.The multifunctional nanoconjugate projects its competence in imparting complete arrest of the future proliferation or migration of the cancer mass.With multifunctionality the essence of nanomedicine in recent years, the present nanoconjugate highlights itself as a viable option for a multimodal treatment option for brain cancers and the like.
Pub.: 24 Dec '13, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Cancer‐targeted nanotechnology is experiencing the trend of finding new materials with multiple functions for imaging and therapeutic applications. With the rapid development of the related fields, there exists a large number of reports regarding theranostic nanomedicine, decreasing the gap between cancer diagnosis and treatment with minimized separate comprehensions. In order to present an overview on the cancer‐targeted nanotheranostics, we first describe their essential building blocks, including platforms, therapeutic agents and imaging agents, and then the recently rapidly developed multimodal theranostic systems. Finally we discuss the major challenges and the perspectives of future development of nanotheranostics toward clinical translations and personalized nanomedicine.
Pub.: 06 May '16, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Advanced theranostic nanomedicine is a multifunctional approach which combines the diagnosis and effective therapy of diseased tissues. Here, we investigated the preparation, characterization and in vitro evaluation of theranostic liposomes. As is known, liposome-quantum dot (L-QD) hybrid vesicles are promising nanoconstructs for cell imaging and liposomal-topotecan (L-TPT) enhances the efficiency of TPT by providing protection against systemic clearance and allowing extended time for it to accumulate in tumors. In the present study, hydrophobic CdSe/ZnS QD and TPT were located in the bilayer membrane and inner core of liposomes, respectively. Dynamic light scattering (DLS), zeta potential (ζ) measurements and fluorescence/absorption spectroscopy were performed to determine the vesicle size, charge and spectroscopic properties of the liposomes. Moreover, drug release was studied under neutral and acidic pH conditions. Fluorescence microscopy and flow cytometry analysis were used to examine the cellular uptake and intracellular distribution of the TPT-loaded L-QD formulation. 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) assay was utilized to investigate the in vitro cytotoxicity of the formulations on HeLa cells. According to the results, the TPT-loaded L-QD hybrid has adequate physicochemical properties and is a promising multifunctional delivery vehicle which is capable of a simultaneous co-delivery of therapeutic and diagnostic agents.
Pub.: 04 Jul '17, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: The blood-brain barrier (BBB) is a vital boundary between neural tissue and circulating blood. BBB unique and protective features control brain homeostasis as well as ion and molecule movement. Failure in maintaining any of these components results in the breakdown of this specialized multicellular structure and consequently promotes neuroinflammation and neurodegeneration. In several high incidence pathologies such as stroke, Alzheimer's (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD) the BBB is impaired. However, even a damaged and more permeable BBB can pose serious challenges to drug delivery into the brain. The use of nanoparticle (NP) formulations able to encapsulate molecules with therapeutic value, while targeting specific transport processes in the brain vasculature, may enhance drug transport through the BBB in neurodegenerative/ischemic disorders and target relevant regions in the brain for regenerative processes. In this review, we will discuss BBB composition and characteristics and how these features are altered in pathology, namely in stroke, AD and PD. Additionally, factors influencing an efficient intravenous delivery of polymeric and inorganic NP into the brain as well as NP-related delivery systems with the most promising functional outcomes will also be discussed.
Pub.: 22 May '16, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Development of therapeutics for brain disorders is one of the more difficult challenges to be overcome by the scientific community due to the inability of most molecules to cross the blood-brain barrier (BBB). Antibody-conjugated nanoparticles are drug carriers that can be used to target encapsulated drugs to the brain endothelial cells and have proven to be very promising. They significantly improve the accumulation of the drug in pathological sites and decrease the undesirable side effect of drugs in healthy tissues. We review the systems that have demonstrated promising results in crossing the BBB through receptor-mediated endocytic mechanisms for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.
Pub.: 16 May '14, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Angiogenesis is essential for the development of malignant tumors and provides important targets for tumor diagnosis and therapy. To noninvasively assess the angiogenic profile of tumors, novel alpha(v)beta(3) integrin-targeted ultrasmall superparamagnetic iron oxide particles (USPIOs) were designed and their specific uptake by endothelial cells was evaluated in vitro and in vivo. USPIOs were coated with 3-aminopropyltrimethoxysilane (APTMS) and conjugated with Arg-Gly-Asp (RGD) peptides. Accumulation in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) was evaluated using Prussian blue staining, transmission electron microscopy, magnetic resonance (MR) imaging, and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Uptake of RGD-USPIO by HUVECs was significantly increased when compared with unlabeled USPIO and could be competitively inhibited by addition of unbound RGD. The ability of the RGD-USPIO to noninvasively distinguish tumors with high (HaCaT-ras-A-5RT3) and lower (A431) area fractions of alpha(v)beta(3) integrin-positive vessels was evaluated using a 1.5-T MR scanner. Indeed, after RGD-USPIO injection, there was a more pronounced decrease in T(2) relaxation times in HaCaT-ras-A-5RT3 tumors than in A431 tumors. Furthermore, T(2)*-weighted images clearly identified the heterogeneous arrangement of vessels with alpha(v)beta(3) integrins in HaCaT-ras-A-5RT3 tumors by an irregular signal intensity decrease. In contrast, in A431 tumors with predominantly small and uniformly distributed vessels, the signal intensity decreased more homogeneously. In summary, RGD-coupled, APTMS-coated USPIOs efficiently label alpha(v)beta(3) integrins expressed on endothelial cells. Furthermore, these molecular MR imaging probes are capable of distinguishing tumors differing in the degree of alpha(v)beta(3) integrin expression and in their angiogenesis profile even when using a clinical 1.5-T MR scanner.
Pub.: 20 Feb '07, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Antibodies to transferrin receptor (TfR) have potential use for therapeutic entry into the brain. We have shown that bispecific antibodies against TfR and β-secretase (BACE1 [β-amyloid cleaving enzyme-1]) traverse the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and effectively reduce brain amyloid β levels. We found that optimizing anti-TfR affinity improves brain exposure and BACE1 inhibition. Here we probe the cellular basis of this improvement and explore whether TfR antibody affinity alters the intracellular trafficking of TfR. Comparing high- and low-affinity TfR bispecific antibodies in vivo, we found that high-affinity binding to TfR caused a dose-dependent reduction of brain TfR levels. In vitro live imaging and colocalization experiments revealed that high-affinity TfR bispecific antibodies facilitated the trafficking of TfR to lysosomes and thus induced the degradation of TfR, an observation which was further confirmed in vivo. Importantly, high-affinity anti-TfR dosing induced reductions in brain TfR levels, which significantly decreased brain exposure to a second dose of low-affinity anti-TfR bispecific. Thus, high-affinity anti-TfR alters TfR trafficking, which dramatically impacts the capacity for TfR to mediate BBB transcytosis.
Pub.: 29 Jan '14, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: A nanoformulation composed of a ribosome inactivating protein-curcin and a hybrid solid lipid nanovector has been devised against glioblastoma. The structurally distinct nanoparticles were highly compatible to human endothelial and neuronal cells. A sturdy drug release from the particles, recorded upto 72 h, was reflected in the time-dependent toxicity. Folate-targeted nanoparticles were specifically internalized by glioma, imparting superior toxicity and curbed an aggressively proliferating in vitro 3D cancer mass in addition to suppressing the anti-apoptotic survivin and cell matrix protein vinculin. Combined with the imaging potential of the encapsulated dye, the nanovector emanates as a multifunctional anti-cancer system.
Pub.: 03 Sep '14, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Authors: Anna Gutkin ; Zvi R. Cohen ; Dan Peer Article URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17425247.2016.1200557?ai=9b1e&mi=83a2f6&af=R Citation: Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery Publication Date: 2016-06-27T04:38:45Z Journal: Expert Opinion on Drug Delivery
Pub.: 27 Jun '16, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Malignant brain cancer treatment is limited by a number of barriers, including the blood-brain barrier, transport within the brain interstitium, difficulties in delivering therapeutics specifically to tumor cells, the highly invasive quality of gliomas and drug resistance. As a result, the prognosis for patients with high-grade gliomas is poor and has improved little in recent years. Nanomedicine approaches have been developed in the laboratory, with some technologies being translated to the clinic, in order to address these needs. This review discusses the obstacles to effective treatment that are currently faced in the field, as well as various nanomedicine techniques that have been used or are being explored to overcome them, with a focus on liposomal and polymeric nanoparticles.
Pub.: 07 Jun '13, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Targeted drug delivery has been the major topic in drug formulation and delivery. As nanomedicine emerges to create nano scale therapeutics and diagnostics, it is still essential to embed targeting capability to these novel systems to make them useful. Here we discuss various targeting approaches for delivery of therapeutic and diagnostic nano materials in view of search for more universal methods to target diseased tissues. Many diseases are accompanied with hypoxia and acidosis. Coating nanoparticles with pH Low Insertion Peptides (pHLIPs) increases efficiency of targeting acidic diseased tissues. It has been showing promising results to create future nanotheranostics for cancer and other diseases which are dominating in the present world.
Pub.: 24 Jan '15, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Glioblastoma is the commonest primary brain tumor, as well as the deadliest. Malignant gliomas such as glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) present some of the greatest challenges in the management of cancer patients worldwide, despite notable recent achievements in oncology. Even with aggressive surgical resections using state-of-the-art preoperative and intraoperative neuroimaging, along with recent advances in radiotherapy and chemotherapy, the prognosis for GBM patients remains dismal: survival after diagnosis is about 1 year. Established prognostic factors are limited, but include age, Karnofsky performance status, mini-mental status examination score, O6-methylguanine methyltransferase promoter methylation and extent of surgery. Standard treatment includes resection of > 95% of the tumor, followed by concurrent chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Nevertheless, GBM research is being conducted worldwide at a remarkable pace, in the laboratory and at the bedside, with some of the more recent promising studies focused on identification of aberrant genetic events and signaling pathways to develop molecular-based targeted therapies, tumor stem cell identification and characterization, modulation of tumor immunological responses and understanding of the rare long-term survivors. With this universally fatal disease, any small breakthrough will have a significant impact on survival and provide hope to the thousands of patients who receive this diagnosis annually. This review describes the epidemiology, clinical presentation, pathology and tumor immunology, with a focus on understanding the molecular biology that underlies the current targeted therapeutics being tested.
Pub.: 05 May '09, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: Glioblastoma (GBM) is one of the most lethal human cancers. Genomic analyses are defining the molecular architecture of GBM, uncovering relevant subsets of patients whose disease may require different treatments. Many pharmacological targets have been revealed, promising to transform patient care through targeted therapies. However, for most patients, clinical responses to targeted inhibitors are either not apparent or not durable. In this review, we address the challenge of developing more effective, molecularly guided approaches for the treatment of GBM patients. We summarize the current state of knowledge regarding molecular classifiers and examine their benefit for stratifying patients for treatment. We survey the molecular landscape of the disease, discussing the challenges raised by acquired drug resistance. Furthermore, we analyze the biochemical features of GBM, suggesting a next generation of drug targets, and we examine the contribution of tumor heterogeneity and its implications. We conclude with an analysis of the experimental approaches and their potential benefit to patients.
Pub.: 14 Aug '13, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
Abstract: One of the biggest challenges in the development of therapeutics for central nervous system (CNS) disorders is achieving sufficient blood-brain barrier (BBB) penetration. Research in the past few decades has revealed that the BBB is not only a substantial barrier for drug delivery to the CNS but also a complex, dynamic interface that adapts to the needs of the CNS, responds to physiological changes, and is affected by and can even promote disease. This complexity confounds simple strategies for drug delivery to the CNS, but provides a wealth of opportunities and approaches for drug development. Here, I review some of the most important areas that have recently redefined the BBB and discuss how they can be applied to the development of CNS therapeutics.
Pub.: 23 Jan '16, Pinned: 25 Sep '17
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