Qizhi Zhang

Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wu-han-shih, Hubei, China

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Publications (33)160.29 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a complex neurodegenerative disease with few effective treatments. The non-targeted distribution of drugs decreases drug efficiency and cause side effects. The cascade targeting strategy has been suggested for precise drug delivery. We developed a dual-functional nanoparticle drug delivery system loaded with β-sheet breaker peptide H102 (TQNP/H102). Two targeting peptides, TGN and QSH, were conjugated to the surface of the nanoparticles for blood-brain barrier transport and Aβ42 targeting, respectively. The prepared nanoparticles were spherical and uniform. The brain distribution study of H102 was conducted with the HPLC-Mass method to evaluate whether this nano-carrier could achieve increased AD-lesion delivery. The highest uptake of H102 was observed in the hippocampi of the TQNP/H102 group mice 1h after administration, which was 2.62 and 1.86 times the level of non-modified nanoparticles (NP/H102) and TGN modified nanoparticles (TNP/H102), respectively. The neuroprotective effects of H102 preparations were evaluated using Morris water maze experiment, biochemical indexes assay and tissue histology. The spatial learning and memory of the AD model mice in the TQNP/H102 group were significantly improved compared with the AD control group, and were also better than other preparations at the same dosage, even the TNP/H102 group. These results were consistent with the values of biochemical indexes in mice hippocampi as well as the histological observations. The results demonstrate that TQNP is a promising carrier for peptide or protein drugs, such as H102, for entry into the central nervous system (CNS) and subsequent location of brain AD lesions, thus offering a highly-specific method for AD therapy.
    Journal of controlled release : official journal of the Controlled Release Society. 08/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: Antigens were conjugated on the surface of N-trimethylaminoethylmethacrylate chitosan (TMC) nanoparticles to induce systemic and mucosal immune responses after nasal immunization.
    Pharmaceutical research. 06/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: The frequent outbreak of respiratory infectious diseases such as influenza and pulmonary tuberculosis calls for new immunization strategies with high effectiveness. Nasal immunization is one of the most potential methods to prevent the diseases infected through the respiratory tract. In this study, we designed a water-soluble system based on antigen/N-trimethylaminoethylmethacrylate chitosan conjugates for nasal immunization. N-trimethylaminoethylmethacrylate chitosan (TMC) was synthesized by free radical polymerization of chitosan and N-trimethylaminoethylmethacrylate chloride and identified by (1)H NMR and FT-IR. Thiolated ovalbumin (OVA) was covalently conjugated to maleimide modified TMC with high conjugation efficiency. OVA conjugated TMC (OVA-TMC) significantly increased uptake of OVA by Raw 264.7 cells, which was 2.38 times higher than that of OVA/TMC physical mixture (OVA+TMC) at 4h. After nasal administration, OVA-TMC showed higher transport efficiency to superficial and deep cervical lymph nodes than OVA+TMC or OVA alone. Balb/C mice were intranasally given with OVA-TMC three times at 2-week internals to evaluate the immunological effect. The serum IgG, IgG1 and IgG2a levels of the OVA-TMC group were 17.9-87.9 times higher than that of the OVA+TMC group and comparable to that of the intramuscular group. The secretory IgA levels in nasal wash and saliva of the OVA-TMC group were 5.2-7.1 times higher than that of the OVA+TMC group while the secretory IgA levels of the intramuscular alum-precipitated OVA group were not increased. After immunofluorescence staining of nasal cavity, IgA antibody secreting cells were mainly observed in the lamina propria regions and glands of nasal mucosa. OVA-TMC showed little toxicity to the nasal epithelia or cilia of rats after nasal administration for three consecutive days. These results demonstrated that antigen conjugated TMC can induce both systemic and mucosal immune responses after nasal administration and may serve as a convenient, safe and effective vaccine for preventing respiratory infectious diseases.
    Vaccine 03/2014; · 3.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To improve the solubility, bioavailability and anti-tumor effect of lapatinib, lapatinib-incorporated lipid nanoparticles (LTNPs) were prepared and characterized. The particle size of LTNPs was 88.6 nm with a zeta potential of 20 mV. Laptinib was loaded into LTNPs with a non-crystal structure as determined by FT-IR. In vitro, LTNPs could be effectively uptaken into C6 glioma cells at a concentration-dependent manner. In vivo, LTNPs showed a relative higher AUC, which was 5.27- and 3.21-fold as that of Tykerb and lapatinib suspension (LTS) group. LTNPs also showed highest glioma concentration, which may benefit from the enhanced permeability and retention effect and active targeting ability. In toxicity studies, LTNPs displayed a half lethal dose over 250 mg/kg. Repeating administering 30 mg/kg of LTNPs could led to toxicity to hematology which might owe to the bovine serum albumin, a foreign protein to mice. However, there was no organic change observed through HE staining. In conclusion, LTNPs could target to glioma with high concentration and low side effect.
    Current pharmaceutical biotechnology 01/2014; · 3.40 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Disabilities caused by neurodegeneration have become one of the main causes of mortality in elderly population, with drug distribution to the brain remaining one of the most difficult challenges in the treatment of the central nervous system (CNS) diseases due to the existence of blood-brain barrier. Lectins modified polyethylene glycol-polylactide-polyglycolide (PEG-PLGA) nanoparticles could enhance the drug delivery to the brain following intranasal administration. In this study, basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) was entrapped in nanoparticles conjugated with solanum tuberosum lectin (STL), which selectively binds to N-acetylglucosamine on the nasal epithelial membrane for its brain delivery. The resulting nanoparticles had uniform particle size and negative zeta potential. The brain distribution of the formulations following intranasal administration was assessed using radioisotopic tracing method. The areas under the concentration-time curve of (125)I-bFGF in the olfactory bulb, cerebrum, and cerebellum of rats following nasal application of STL modified nanoparticles (STL-bFGF-NP) were 1.79∼5.17 folds of that of rats with intravenous administration, and 0.61∼2.21 and 0.19∼1.07 folds higher compared with intranasal solution and unmodified nanoparticles, respectively. Neuroprotective effect was evaluated using Mirror water maze task in rats with intracerebroventricular injection of β-Amyloid25-35 and ibotenic acid. The spatial learning and memory of Alzheimer's disease (AD) rats in STL-bFGF-NP group were significantly improved compared with AD model group, and were also better than other preparations. The results were consistent with the value of choline acetyltransferase activity of rat hippocampus as well as the histological observations of rat hippocampal region. The histopathology assays also confirmed the in vivo safety of STL-bFGF-NP. These results clearly indicated that STL-NP was a promising drug delivery system for peptide and protein drugs such as bFGF to enter the CNS and play the therapeutic role.
    International Journal of Pharmaceutics 11/2013; · 3.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder with few treatments. The limitations imposed by the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and the non-selective distribution of drugs in the brain have hindered the effective treatment of AD and may result in severe side effects on the normal brains. We developed a dual-functional nanoparticle drug delivery system based on a PEGylated poly (lactic acid) (PLA) polymer. Two targeting peptides that were screened by phage display, TGN and QSH, were conjugated to the surface of the nanoparticles. TGN specifically targets ligands at the BBB, while QSH has good affinity with Aβ1-42, which is the main component of amyloid plaque. Tests probing the bEnd.3 cell uptake and in vivo imaging were conducted to determine the best density of TGN on the nanoparticles' surfaces. The optimal amount of QSH was studied using a Thioflavin T (ThT) binding assay and surface plasmon resonance (SPR) experiments. The optimal maleimide/peptide molar ratio was 3 for both TGN and QSH on the surface of the nanoparticles (T3Q3-NP), and these nanoparticles achieved enhanced and precise targeted delivery to amyloid plaque in the brains of AD model mice. A MTT assay also validated the safety of this dual-targeted delivery system; little cytotoxicity was demonstrated with both bEnd.3 and PC 12 cells. In conclusion, the T3Q3-NP might be a valuable targeting system for AD diagnosis and therapy.
    Biomaterials 10/2013; · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chemotherapy for brain glioma has been of limited benefit due to the inability of drugs to penetrate the blood-brain barrier (BBB) and non-selective drug accumulation in the entire brain. To obviate these limitations, dual-targeting paclitaxel-loaded nanoparticles were developed by decoration with peptide-22 (PNP-PTX), a peptide with special affinity for low-density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR), to transport the drug across the BBB, and then target brain tumour cells. Enzyme-linked immune sorbent assay (ELISA) revealed that LDLR was over-expressed in C6 cells and brain capillary endothelial cells (BCECs), but low LDLR expression was observed in H92c(2-1) cells. Nanoparticle uptake demonstrated that peptide-22-decorated nanoparticles significantly increased the cellular uptake of nanoparticles by C6 cells and BCECs but not by H92c(2-1) cells, and excess free peptide-22 significantly inhibited the cellular uptake of PNP by C6 cells and BCECs. Cellular uptake mechanism experiments showed that PNP uptake by both BCECs and C6 cells was energy-dependant and caveolae- and clathrin-mediated endocytosis pathway other than macropinocytosis were involved. Dual-targeting effects in an in vitro BBB model showed that peptide-22 decoration on nanoparticles loaded with paclitaxel significantly increased the transport ratio of PTX across the BBB and induced apoptosis of C6 glioma cells below the BBB, and these effects were significantly inhibited by excess free peptide-22. Ex vivo and in vivo fluorescence imaging indicated that PNP labelled with a near-infrared dye could permeate the BBB and accumulate more in the glioma site than unmodified NP. Glioma section observed by fluorescence microscopy further demonstrated PNP distributed more extensively in both glioma bulk and infiltrative region around than unmodified NP. Pharmacodynamics results revealed that the median survival time of glioma-bearing mice administered with dual-targeting PNP-PTX was significantly prolonged compared with that of any other group. TUNEL assay and H&E staining showed that PNP-PTX treatment induced significantly more cell apoptosis and tumour necrosis compared with other treatments. Taken together, these promising results suggested that the dual-targeting drug delivery system might have great potential for glioma therapy in clinical applications.
    Biomaterials 09/2013; · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Abstract Concanavalin A (ConA)-conjugated poly(ethylene glycol)-poly(lactic acid) nanoparticles (ConA-NPs) were prepared for targeted drug delivery to the cervical lymph nodes after intranasal administration. ConA, a lectin specifically binding to α-mannose and α-glucose, was covalently conjugated on NPs without loss of its carbohydrates binding bioactivity. In vitro cellular uptake experiment demonstrated that NPs could be uptaken by Calu-3 cells in a time- and concentration-dependent manner, and conjugation of ConA on NPs could significantly increase the rate and amount of cellular uptake. ConA-NP showed no obvious toxicity to Calu-3 cells in vitro or to the nasal cilia of rats in vivo. Compared with NPs without ConA, ConA-NP is more effective in targeting drugs to the deep cervical lymph nodes, as evidenced by 1.36-2.52 times increase of targeting efficiency, demonstrating that ConA-NP is a potential carrier for targeted drug delivery to the cervical lymph nodes via nasal route.
    Journal of Microencapsulation 04/2013; · 1.57 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: PURPOSE: A phage-displayed peptide TGN was used as a targeting motif to help the delivery of NAP-loaded nanoparticles across the blood-brain barrier (BBB), which sets an obstacle for brain delivery of NAP in vivo. METHODS: Intracerebroventricular injection of Aβ1-40 into mice was used to construct in vivo model of Alzheimer's disease. The water maze task was performed to evaluate the effects of the NAP formulations on learning and memory deficits in mice. The neuroprotective effect was tested by detecting acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) activity and conducting histological assays. RESULTS: Intravenous administration of NAP-loaded TGN modified nanoparticles (TGN-NP/NAP) has shown better improvement in spatial learning than NAP solution and NAP-loaded nanoparticles in Morris water maze experiment. The crossing number of the mice with memory deficits recovered after treatment with TGN-NP/NAP in a dose dependent manner. Similar results were also observed in AChE and ChAT activity. No morphological damage and no detectable Aβ plaques were found in mice hippocampus and cortex treated with TGN-NP/NAP. CONCLUSIONS: TGN modified nanoparticles could be a promising drug delivery system for peptide and protein drug such as NAP to enter the brain and play the therapeutic role.
    Pharmaceutical Research 04/2013; · 4.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Aim: The poor water solubility of many active compounds is a serious deterrent to their use as commercial drugs. Lapatinib is a dual inhibitor of the EGF receptor and EGF receptor 2 approved by the US FDA to treat advanced breast cancer. This study prepares lapatinib-incorporated lipoprotein-like nanoparticles (LTNPs) to enhance the water solubility and elevate the antitumor effect of lapatinib. Materials & methods: Bovine albumin was used to bind with lapatinib, and egg yolk lecithin was used to stabilize the conjugation of bovine albumin and lapatinib. The characteristics of LTNPs were evaluated by several experiments. Cell uptake and toxicity were performed on BT-474 cells. In vivo antitumor effect was performed on BT-474 xenograft-bearing mice. Results: LTNPs contained a lipid corona and a core of lapatinib and albumin. LTNPs could be effectively taken up by BT-474 cells and induced apoptosis. An in vivo study demonstrated that LTNPs could passively distribute into a tumor via the enhanced permeability and retention effect and induce antitumor activity in breast cancer. Conclusion: The authors present a convenient nanoformulation with improved antitumor effect, which is a promising candidate for clinical trials. Original submitted 28 May 2012; Revised submitted 31 August 2012.
    Nanomedicine 03/2013; · 5.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Phage-displayed TGN peptide-decorated polymeric micelle-like polyplexes based on pegylated poly(2-(dimethylamino) ethyl methacrylate) (PEG-PDMAEMA) were prepared for efficient brain-targeted gene delivery. The diblock copolymers Methoxy-PEG-PDMAEMA and Maleimide-PEG-PDMAEMA were synthesized by the atom transfer radical polymerization method. The TGN ligand, a 12-amino acid peptide that could facilitate blood-brain barrier (BBB) targeting, was conjugated to the PEG terminus of the copolymer via a maleimide-mediated covalent binding procedure. TGN-PEG-PDMAEMA was complexed with plasmid DNA to yield polyplexes. The physiochemical properties of the polyplexes, such as morphology, particle size, zeta potential, cytotoxicity and DNA complex formation ability, were studied prior to the successful in vitro and in vivo transfection. The TGN-PEG-PDMAEMA/DNA polyplexes maintained their stable nano-size, were characterized by good condensation capacity and low toxicity and even provided higher cellular uptake than the unmodified polyplexes (PEG-PDMAEMA/DNA polyplexes). Confocal microscopy studies showed that the DNA of TGN-PEG-PDMAEMA/DNA polyplexes entered into the nuclei through the endosome/lysosome pathway. The transfection efficiency of TGN-modified polyplexes was higher than that of unmodified polyplexes both in vitro and in vivo. The results obtained from frozen sections indicated the widespread expression of an exogenous gene in the mouse brain after intravenous injection. Therefore, the results demonstrate that the TGN-decorated PEG-PDMAEMA developed in this study could be utilized as a potential vehicle for gene delivery to the brain.
    Biomaterials 12/2012; · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Though there has been substantial advancement in the knowledge about tumour development and treatment in the past 40 years, the prognosis of brain glioblastoma is still very grim due to the difficulty of targeting drugs to glioblastoma cells. An active targeting delivery system helps increase intracellular drug delivery, which is promising for the treatment of glioblastoma. For an active targeting delivery system, targeting ligands are crucial for efficient intracellular drug delivery. Current methods include systematic evolution of ligands by exponential enrichment (SELEX), which has been utilised for selecting specific ligands with better targeting effects. The GMT8 aptamer was a short DNA sequence selected by SELEX that could specifically bind with U87 cells. In this study, nanoparticles functionalised with GMT8 aptamers (ApNP) were utilised for glioblastoma therapy. In vitro cell uptake and U87 tumour spheroid uptake demonstrated that nanoparticles functionalised with GMT8 aptamer significantly enhanced intracellular drug delivery and tumour spheroid penetration. Assays for cell apoptosis and growth inhibition of tumour spheroids identified docetaxel-loaded ApNP to significantly induce cell apoptosis and inhibit tumour spheroid growth. In vivo imaging of glioblastoma-bearing mice demonstrated that ApNP could target glioblastoma and accumulate at the tumour site, which was further verified by fluorescence imaging of brain slices. Pharmacodynamic results indicated that docetaxel-loaded ApNP significantly prolonged the median survival time of glioblastoma-bearing mice compared to NP, DTX and control. In conclusion, GMT8 aptamer-functionalised nanoparticles enhanced tumour penetration and targeted glioblastoma therapy, which is promising for the prognosis of brain glioblastoma.
    Biomaterials 06/2012; 33(26):6264-72. · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The treatment of a brain glioma is still one of the most difficult challenges in oncology. To effectively treat brain glioma and reduce the side effects, drugs must be transported across the blood brain barrier (BBB) and then targeted to the brain cancer cells because most anti-tumor drugs are highly toxic to the normal brain tissue. A cascade delivery strategy was developed to perform these two aims and to achieve enhanced and precisely targeted delivery. Herein, we utilize a phage-displayed TGN peptide and an AS1411 aptamer, which are specific targeting ligands of the BBB and cancer cells, respectively and we conjugate them with nanoparticles to establish the brain glioma cascade delivery system (AsTNP). In vitro cell uptake and three-dimensional tumor spheroid penetration studies demonstrated that the system could not only target endothelial and tumor cells but also penetrate the endothelial monolayers and tumor cells to reach the core of the tumor spheroids, which was extremely important but mostly ignored in glioma therapy. In vivo imaging further demonstrated that the AsTNP provided the highest tumor distribution and tumor/normal brain ratio. The distribution was also reconfirmed by fluorescent images of the brain slides. As a result, the docetaxel-loaded AsTNP presents the best anti-glioma effect with improved glioma bearing survival. In conclusion, the AsTNP could precisely target to the brain glioma, which was a valuable target for glioma imaging and therapy.
    Biomaterials 04/2012; 33(20):5115-23. · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Solanum tuberosum lectin (STL) conjugated poly (DL-lactic-co- glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticle (STL-NP) was constructed in this paper as a novel biodegradable nose-to-brain drug delivery system. The in vitro uptake study showed markedly enhanced endocytosis of STL-NP compared to unmodified PLGA nanoparticles (NP) in Calu-3 cells and significant inhibition of uptake in the presence of inhibitor sugar (chitin hydrolysate). Following intranasal administration, coumarin-6 carried by STL-NP was rapidly absorbed into blood and brain. The AUC((0→12 h)) of coumarin-6 in blood, olfactory bulb, cerebrum and cerebellum were about 0.77-, 1.48-, 1.89- and 1.45-fold of those of NP, respectively (p < 0.05). STL-NP demonstrated 1.89-2.45 times (p < 0.01) higher brain targeting efficiency in different brain tissues than unmodified NP. Enhanced accumulation of STL-NP in the brain was also observed by near infrared fluorescence probe image following intranasal administration. The fluorescence signal of STL-NP appeared in olfactory bulb, cerebrum and brainstem early at 0.25 h. The signal in olfactory bulb decreased gradually after 2 h, while the obvious signal in brainstem, cerebrum and cerebellum lasted for more than 8 h. The STL-NP safety experiments showed mild cytotoxicity and negligible cilia irritation. These intriguing in vitro and in vivo results suggest that STL-NP might serve as a promising brain drug delivery system.
    Journal of Drug Targeting 02/2012; 20(2):174-84. · 2.77 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the possible pathways for transport of wheat germ agglutinin conjugated PEG-PLA nanoparticles (WGA-NP) into the brain after nasal administration. The nose-to-brain pathways were investigated using WGA-NP containing 6-coumarin (as a fluorescent marker) and (125)I-labeled WGA-NP. Ex vivo imaging analysis was also employed to visualize the transport process. Nasal administration of WGA-NP to rats resulted in transcellular absorption across the olfactory epithelium and transfer to the olfactory bulb within 5 min. After entering the lamina propria, a proportion of WGA-NP were transferred from the olfactory nerve bundles and their surrounding connective tissue to the olfactory bulb. The trigeminal nerves also contributed to WGA-NP brain transfer, especially to WGA-NP distribution in the caudal brain areas. However, cerebrospinal fluid pathway may have little contribution to the process of transferring WGA-NP into the central nervous system (CNS) after intranasal administration. These results demonstrated that intranasally administered WGA-NP reach the CNS via olfactory pathway and trigeminal nerve pathway, and extracellular transport along these nerves is the most possible mechanism.
    Pharmaceutical Research 12/2011; 29(2):546-58. · 4.74 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) delivery to the brain of animals appears to be an emerging potential therapeutic approach to neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). The intranasal route of administration could provide an alternative to intracerebroventricular infusion. A nasal spray of bFGF had been developed previously and the objective of the present study was to investigate whether bFGF nasal spray could enhance brain uptake of bFGF and ameliorate memory impairment induced by co-injection of β-amyloid(25-35) and ibotenic acid into bilateral hippocampus of rats. The results of brain uptake study showed that the AUC(0-12h) of bFGF nasal spray in olfactory bulb, cerebrum, cerebellum and hippocampus was respectively 2.47, 2.38, 2.56 and 2.19 times that of intravenous bFGF solution, and 1.11, 1.95, 1.40 and 1.93 times that of intranasal bFGF solution, indicating that intranasal administration of bFGF nasal spray was an effective means of delivering bFGF to the brain, especially to cerebrum and hippocampus. In Morris water maze tasks, intravenous administration of bFGF solution at high dose (40 μg/kg) showed little improvement on spatial memory impairment. In contrast, bFGF solution of the same dose following intranasal administration could significantly ameliorate spatial memory impairment. bFGF nasal spray obviously improved spatial memory impairment even at a dose half (20 μg/kg) of bFGF solution, recovered their acetylcholinesterase and choline acetyltransferase activity to the sham control level, and alleviated neuronal degeneration in rat hippocampus, indicating neuroprotective effects on the central nerve system. In a word, bFGF nasal spray may be a new formulation of great potential for treating AD.
    International Journal of Pharmaceutics 12/2011; 423(2):226-34. · 3.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, we report an angiopep-2 modified cationic liposome (ANG-CLP) for the efficient co-delivery of a therapeutic gene encoding the human tumour necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (pEGFP-hTRAIL) and paclitaxel (PTX) to glioma. The dual targeting co-delivery system (ANG-CLP/PTX/pEGFP-hTRAIL) improved uptake and gene expression not only in U87 MG cells and BCECs, but also in the glioma bed and infiltrating margin of intracranial U87 MG glioma-bearing models. The system selectively induces apoptosis in U87 MG cells while reducing toxicity to BCECs. The results of the pharmacodynamics studies showed that the apoptosis of glioma cells in in vitro BBB models and in U87 MG glioma-bearing mice induced by ANG-CLP/PTX/pEGFP-hTRAIL was more apparent and widespread than that induced by single medication systems and unmodified co-delivery system. More importantly, the median survival time of brain tumour-bearing mice treated with ANG-CLP/PTX/pEGFP-hTRAIL was 69.5 days, significantly longer than that of other groups, even longer than the commercial temozolomide group (47 days). Therefore, the dual targeting co-delivery system is a promising drug delivery strategy against glioma.
    Biomaterials 10/2011; 33(3):916-24. · 8.31 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Because of the immunogenicity and toxicity in vivo of large molecules such as lectins, the application of these molecules is remarkably restricted in drug delivery systems. In this study, to improve the brain drug delivery and reduce the immunogenicity of traditional lectin modified delivery system, Odorranalectin (OL, 1700 Da), a novel non-immunogenic small peptide, was selected to establish an OL-modified cubosomes (Cubs) system. The streptavidin (SA)-conjugated Cubs were prepared by incorporating maleimide-PEG-oleate and taking advantage of its thiol group binding reactivity to conjugate with 2-iminothiolane thiolated SA; mono-biotinylated OL was then coupled with the SA-modified Cubs. The OL-decorated Cubs (OL-Cubs) devised via a non-covalent SA-biotin "bridge" made it easy to conjugate OL and determine the number of ligands on the surface of the Cubs using sensitive chemiluminescent detection. Retention of the bio-recognitive activity of OL after covalent coupling was verified by hemagglutination testing. Nose-to-brain delivery characteristic of OL-Cubs was investigated by in vivo fluorescent biodistribution using coumarin-6 as a marker. The relative uptake of coumarin carried by OL-Cubs was 1.66- to 3.46-fold in brain tissues compared to that incorporated in the Cubs. Besides, Gly14-Humanin (S14G-HN) as a model peptide drug was loaded into cubosomes and evaluated for its pharmacodynamics on Alzheimer's disease (AD) rats following intranasal administration by Morris water maze test and acetylcholinesterase activity determination. The results suggested that OL functionalization enhanced the therapeutic effects of S14G-HN-loaded cubosomes on AD. Thus, OL-Cubs might offer a novel effective and noninvasive system for brain drug delivery, especially for peptides and proteins.
    European journal of pharmaceutics and biopharmaceutics: official journal of Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur Pharmazeutische Verfahrenstechnik e.V 10/2011; 80(2):368-78. · 3.15 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Phage display technology could provide a rapid means for the discovery of novel peptides. To find peptide ligands specific for the brain vascular receptors, we performed a modified phage display method. Phages were recovered from mice brain parenchyma after administrated with a random 7-mer peptide library intravenously. A longer circulation time was arranged according to the biodistributive brain/blood ratios of phage particles. Following sequential rounds of isolation, a number of phages were sequenced and a peptide sequence (CTSTSAPYC, denoted as PepC7) was identified. Clone 7-1, which encodes PepC7, exhibited translocation efficiency about 41-fold higher than the random library phage. Immunofluorescence analysis revealed that Clone 7-1 had a significant superiority on transport efficiency into the brain compared with native M13 phage. Clone 7-1 was inhibited from homing to the brain in a dose-dependent fashion when cyclic peptides of the same sequence were present in a competition assay. Interestingly, the linear peptide (ATSTSAPYA, Pep7) and a scrambled control peptide PepSC7 (CSPATSYTC) did not compete with the phage at the same tested concentration (0.2-200 pg). Labeled by Cy5.5, PepC7 exhibited significant brain-targeting capability in in vivo optical imaging analysis. The cyclic conformation of PepC7 formed by disulfide bond, and the correct structure itself play a critical role in maintaining the selectivity and affinity for the brain. In conclusion, PepC7 is a promising brain-target motif never been reported before and it could be applied to targeted drug delivery into the brain.
    Amino Acids 07/2011; 42(6):2373-81. · 3.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) modified PEG-PLA nanoparticles (WGA-NP) have demonstrated its potential for enhancing delivery of peptides into brain following intranasal administration. However, the effect of ligand density is less well known. WGA density may affect nanoparticles uptake in nasal epithelial cells through ligand-receptor interactions, and the damage to nasal tissue since WGA showed cytotoxicity to cells in a dose-dependent manner. In this study, the effect of WGA density on WGA-NP was studied with regard to both the uptake and toxicity in vitro, using Calu-3 cells, which express a number of N-acetylglucosamine on their cell surface. Nanoparticles containing different WGA ligand densities were prepared by controlling the molar ratio of thiolated WGA to maleimide-PEG-PLA (WGA/maleimide) and particles properties were examined. With the increase of WGA/maleimide ratio, the particle size, WGA density and the hemoagglutination increased, while the conjugation efficiency decreased. The in vitro study showed markedly enhanced endocytosis of WGA-NP compared to NP in Calu-3 cells and significant inhibition of uptake in the presence of chitin. Cytotoxicity of WGA-NP increased gradually with the increase of molar ratio of WGA to maleimide, nanoparticles concentration and incubation time. WGA-NP showed the highest efficiency of uptake and a mild cytotoxicity when the molar ratio of WGA to maleimide was 1:10. These results suggest that WGA density plays an important role in both cellular uptake and toxicity of WGA-NP via a receptor-mediated mechanism. Therefore, to achieve a more rational approach of drug delivery system design, the surface density of the targeting moiety on the nanoparticles surface should be considered.
    International Journal of Pharmaceutics 07/2011; 413(1-2):184-93. · 3.99 Impact Factor