Investigation of anti-tumor effect of doxorubicin-loaded human serum albumin nanoparticles prepared by a desolvation technique

  • Kotaro Kimura
  • Keishi YamasakiEmail author
  • Koji Nishi
  • Kazuaki Taguchi
  • Masaki OtagiriEmail author
Original Article



Nanoparticles of human serum albumin (HSA) prepared using a desolvation method possess sizes suitable for tumor accumulation. Here, we report on an investigation of the anti-tumor effects and biodistribution of doxorubicin–HSA nanoparticles in vitro and in vivo.


The cytotoxicity of nanoparticles was evaluated in 2D and 3D colon 26 cell cultures. Furthermore, the biodistribution and the anti-tumor activity of nanoparticles in colon 26-bearing mice were investigated. Assessments on the effect on metastasis and the toxicity were also carried out.


Doxorubicin–HSA nanoparticles showed cytotoxicity in colon 26 cancer cell cultures, although the cytotoxicity was less in the case of nanoparticles than in free doxorubicin. In vivo anti-tumor activity was more pronounced in nanoparticles despite the fact that their accumulation in tumors was not superior to that of free doxorubicin, suggesting that factors other than accumulation contribute to the enhanced anti-tumor activity of these nanoparticles. The administration of nanoparticles also resulted in the suppression of metastasis.


The prepared nanoparticles appear to be effective for cancer therapy although further studies will be needed to clarify the details of anti-tumor activity and the toxicity of these nanoparticles.


Human serum albumin Nanoparticles Desolvation Doxorubicin 



We wish to thank the Nipro Corporation (Shiga, Japan) for the generous gift of rHSA.


This work was supported in part by Grants-in Aid for Scientific Research from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) (KAKENHI 17K08261).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors declare no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving animal experiments were in accordance with the ethical standards of Animal Care and Use committee of Sojo University. This article does not contain any studies with human participants.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Pharmaceutical SciencesSojo UniversityKumamotoJapan
  2. 2.DDS Research InstituteSojo UniversityKumamotoJapan
  3. 3.Faculty of PharmacyKeio UniversityTokyoJapan

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