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An MMP‑2 Responsive Liposome Integrating Antifibrosis and Chemotherapeutic Drugs for Enhanced Drug Perfusion and Efficacy in Pancreatic Cancer

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journal contribution
posted on 04.02.2016, 19:23 by Tianjiao Ji, Suping Li, Yinlong Zhang, Jiayan Lang, Yanping Ding, Xiao Zhao, Ruifang Zhao, Yiye Li, Jian Shi, Jihui Hao, Ying Zhao, Guangjun Nie
Fibrotic stroma, a critical character of pancreatic tumor microenvironment, provides a critical barrier against the penetration and efficacy of various antitumor drugs. Therefore, new strategies are urgently needed to alleviate the fibrotic mass and increase the drug perfusion within pancreatic cancer tissue. In our current work, we developed a β-cyclodextrin (β-CD) modified matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) responsive liposome, integrating antifibrosis and chemotherapeutic drugs for regulation of pancreatic stellate cells (PSCs), a key source of the fibrosis, and targeted delivery of cytotoxic drugs for pancreatic cancer therapy. These liposomes disassembed into two functional parts upon MMP-2 cleavage at the tumor site. One part was constituted by the β-CDs and the antifibrosis drug pirfenidone, which was kept in the stroma and inhibited the expression of collagen I and TGF-β in PSCs, down-regulating the fibrosis and decreasing the stromal barrier. The other segment, the RGD peptide-modified-liposome loading the chemotherapeutic drug gemcitabine, targeted and killed pancreatic tumor cells. This integrated nanomedicine, showing an increased drug perfusion without any overt side effects, may provide a potential strategy for improvement of the pancreatic cancer therapy.