Paclitaxel loading in PLGA nanospheres affected the in vitro drug cell accumulation and antiproliferative activity

Luisa Vicari, Teresa Musumeci, Ignazio Giannone, Luana Adamo, Concetta Conticello, Ruggero De Maria Marchiano, Rosario Pignatello, Giovanni Puglisi, Massimo Gulisano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

33 Citations (Scopus)


Background: PTX is one of the most widely used drug in oncology due to its high efficacy against solid tumors and several hematological cancers. PTX is administered in a formulation containing 1:1 Cremophor® EL (polyethoxylated castor oil) and ethanol, often responsible for toxic effects. Its encapsulation in colloidal delivery systems would gain an improved targeting to cancer cells, reducing the dose and frequency of administration. Methods: In this paper PTX was loaded in PLGA NS. The activity of PTX-NS was assessed in vitro against thyroid, breast and bladder cancer cell lines in cultures. Cell growth was evaluated by MTS assay, intracellular NS uptake was performed using coumarin-6 labelled NS and the amount of intracellular PTX was measured by HPLC. Results: NS loaded with 3% PTX (w/w) had a mean size < 250 nm and a polydispersity index of 0.4 after freeze-drying with 0.5% HP-Cyd as cryoprotector. PTX encapsulation efficiency was 30% and NS showed a prolonged drug release in vitro. An increase of the cytotoxic effect of PTX-NS was observed with respect to free PTX in all cell lines tested. Conclusion: These findings suggest that the greater biological effect of PTX-NS could be due to higher uptake of the drug inside the cells as shown by intracellular NS uptake and cell accumulation studies. © 2008 Vicari et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)N/A-N/A
JournalBMC Cancer
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Cancer Research
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cell Survival
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Colloids
  • Coumarins
  • Drug Carriers
  • Genetics
  • Hematologic Neoplasms
  • Humans
  • Lactic Acid
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Neoplasms
  • Oncology
  • Paclitaxel
  • Polyglycolic Acid


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