American Chemical Society
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Combating Multidrug Resistance through an NIR-Triggered Cyanine-Containing Amphiphilic Block Copolymer

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journal contribution
posted on 2019-04-12, 00:00 authored by Jia Tian, Chao Xiao, Baoxuan Huang, Xiaoze Jiang, Hongliang Cao, Feng Liu, Weian Zhang
Nowadays, multidrug resistance is the main challenge during cancer chemotherapy. Photochemical internalization (PCI) has been demonstrated to be a unique and promising approach to overcome multidrug resistance with light-harnessed activation. Here, an amphiphilic pH-responsive block copolymer with IR780 at the junction point [PEG-IR780-PDEAEMA; PEG, poly­(ethylene glycol); PDEAEMA, poly­((diethylamino)­ethyl methacrylate)] has been designed as a perfect drug release platform as well as a functional macromolecular photosensitizer of PCI. PEG-IR780-PDEAEMA was synthesized by the combination of RAFT polymerization and click chemistry and further self-assembled into spherical micelles in aqueous solution. Notably, IR780 moieties were dispersed regularly around the core of the spherical micelles, which led to the diminishment of the aggregation-caused quenching effect of photosensitizers and high singlet oxygen quantum yield. Confocal laser scanning microscopy results showed that a high amount of doxorubicin (DOX) was translocated into the nucleus with NIR light irradiation through the PCI effect. Moreover, DOX-loaded PEG-IR780-PDEAEMA micelles showed much higher phototoxicity under short-time NIR light irradiation than their dark toxicity. Therefore, this DOX-loaded drug release platform based on pH-sensitive IR780-containing block copolymers has the potential to offer an efficient strategy for addressing drug resistance.