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Dextran Vesicular Carriers for Dual Encapsulation of Hydrophilic and Hydrophobic Molecules and Delivery into Cells

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posted on 12.11.2012, 00:00 by P. S. Pramod, Kathryn Takamura, Sonali Chaphekar, Nagaraj Balasubramanian, M. Jayakannan
Dextran vesicular nanoscaffolds were developed based on polysaccharide and renewable resource alkyl tail for dual encapsulation of hydrophilic and hydrophobic molecules (or drugs) and delivery into cells. The roles of the hydrophobic segments on the molecular self-organization of dextran backbone into vesicles or nanoparticles were investigated in detail. Dextran vesicles were found to be a unique dual carrier in which water-soluble molecules (like Rhodamine-B, Rh-B) and polyaromatic anticancer drug (camptothecin, CPT) were selectively encapsulated in the hydrophilic core and hydrophobic layer, respectively. The dextran vesicles were capable of protecting the plasma-sensitive CPT lactone pharmacophore against the hydrolysis by 10× better than the CPT alone in PBS. The aliphatic ester linkage connecting the hydrophobic tail with dextran was found to be cleaved by esterase under physiological conditions for fast releasing of CPT or Rh-B. Cytotoxicity of the dextran vesicle and its drug conjugate were tested on mouse embryonic fibroblast cells (MEFs) using MTT assay. The dextran vesicular scaffold was found to be nontoxic to living cells. CPT loaded vesicles were found to be 2.5-fold more effective in killing fibroblasts compared to that of CPT alone in PBS. Confocal microscopic images confirmed that both Rh-B and CPT loaded vesicles to be taken up by fibroblasts compared to CPT alone, showing a distinctly perinuclear localization in cells. The custom designed dextran vesicular provides new research opportunities for dual loading and delivering of hydrophilic and hydrophobic drug molecules.