Biotin-Modified Polylactic- co-Glycolic Acid Nanoparticles with Improved Antiproliferative Activity of 15,16-Dihydrotanshinone i in Human Cervical Cancer Cells

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15,16-Dihydrotanshinone I (DI), a natural compound isolated from a traditional Asian functional food Salvia Miltiorrhiza Bunge, is known for its anticancer activity. However, poor solubility of DI limits its desirable anticancer application. Herein, polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA) was functionalized with polyethylene glycol (PEG) and biotin to form copolymers PEG-PLGA (PPA) and biotin-PEG-PLGA (BPA). DI was encapsulated in copolymers PPA and BPA to obtain DI-PPA-NPs (NPs = nanoparticles) and DI-BPA-NPs, respectively. The particle size and its distribution, encapsulation efficiency, and in vitro releasing capacity of DI-BPA-NPs were characterized by biophysical methods. MTT assay was used to evaluate the antiproliferative activity of free DI, DI-PPA-NPs, and DI-BPA-NPs in human cervical cancer Hela cells. DI-BPA-NPs showed the highest cytotoxicity on Hela cells with an IC50 value of 4.55 ± 0.631 μM, while it was 8.20 ± 0.849 and 6.14 ± 0.312 μM for DI and DI-PPA-NPs in 72 h, respectively. The superior antiproliferative activity was supported by the fact that DI-BPA-NPs could be preferentially internalized by Hela cells, owing to their specific interaction between biotin and overexpressed biotin receptors. In addition, DI-BPA-NPs effectively inhibited Hela cell proliferation by inducing G2/M phase cycle arrest and decreasing the intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) level by 31.50 ± 2.29% in 5 min. In summary, DI-BPA-NPs shows improved antiproliferative activity against human cervical cancer as comparing with free DI, demonstrating its application potential in cancer therapy.

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Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry