Design and Synthesis of Doxorubicin Conjugated Gold Nanoparticles as Anticancer Drug Delivery System
Doxorubicin is one of the most widely used and effective anticancer agents to treat a wide spectrum of tumors. But its success in cancer therapy is greatly compromised by its cumulative dose-dependent side effects of cardiotoxicity and tumor cell resistance. For the purpose of addressing these side effects, a gold nanoparticles-based anticancer drug delivery system was designed. Five novel thiolated doxorubicin analogs were designed and synthesized and their biological activities have been evaluated. These doxorubicin analogs and the poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG) stabilizing ligands were conjugated to gold nanoparticles via formation of a gold-thiol bond. The systems were evaluated in vitro and in vivo, and the results show that controlled drug release can be achieved either by acidic conditions or by reducing agents in cancer cells, depending on the design of the thiolated drug construct. The overall drug delivery system should achieve enhanced drug accumulation and retention in cancer cells and favorable drug release kinetics, and should demonstrate therapeutic potential and the ability to address some of the current problems of doxorubicin in cancer therapy.