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Natural-Origin Hypocrellin-HSA Assembly for Highly Efficient NIR Light-Responsive Phototheranostics against Hypoxic Tumors

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journal contribution
posted on 21.11.2019, 22:13 by Chuangli Zhang, Jiasheng Wu, Weimin Liu, Xiuli Zheng, Pengfei Wang
Tumor hypoxia severely limits the therapeutic efficacy of solid tumors in photodynamic therapy. One strategy is to develop photosensitizers with simultaneously high efficiency in photodynamic (PDT) and photothermal therapies (PTT) in a single natural-origin phototheranostic agent to overcome this problem. However, less attention has been paid to the natural-origin phototheranostic agent with high PDT and PTT efficiencies even though they have negligible side effects and are environmentally sustainable in comparison with many reported phototheranostic agents. In addition, almost all clinical applied photosensitizers are of natural origin so far. Herein, we synthesized a natural product-based hypocrellin derivative (AETHB), with a high singlet oxygen quantum yield of 0.64 as an efficient photosensitizer different from commercially available porphyrin-based photosensitizers. AETHB is further assembled with human serum albumin to construct nanoparticles (HSA-AETHB NPs) with a high photothermal conversion efficiency (more than 50%). As-prepared HSA-AETHB NPs have shown good water solubility and biocompatibility, pH and light stability, wide absorption (400–750 nm), and NIR emission centered at 710 nm. More importantly, HSA-AETHB NPs can be applied for fluorescent/photoacoustic dual-mode imaging and simultaneously highly efficient PDT/PTT in hypoxic solid tumors. Therefore, this natural-origin multifunctional phototheranostic agent is showing very promising for effective, precise, and safe cancer therapy in clinical applications.