A novel cancer treatment method is being designed using a combination of iron oxide (Fe3O4) nanoparticles (IONPs) and Pluronic F-127 (PF127). IONPs have been used for heating tumors via an alternating electromagnetic (AEM) field. PF127 is a polymer possessing thermo-reversible and concentration-dependent gelation properties in aqueous solutions. PF127, as a gel, is an attractive drug delivery vehicle due to its zero-order drug release property. The combination of IONPs and PF127 would allow both short-term, tumor-specific, hyperthermic treatment, and long-term sustained drug delivery. As a preliminary study, the gelling and heating properties of IONPs/PF127 mixtures were investigated: 18% (w/w) PF127 was found to be ideal for our purpose because it gels at 28.0°C, i.e., it would be injectable at room temperature (20–25°C) and forms gel upon injection into the body (37°C). IONPs in PF127 showed little effect on gelation temperatures. The heating performance of IONPs in PF127 slightly, but linearly decreased with PF127. In the IONP concentration range of 0.01–0.05% (w/v) mixed with PF127 at 18% (w/w), the heating performance increased linearly with the increase in IONP concentration.
Nanoparticles Anti-cancer drug delivery
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Special thanks go to Ms. Jianting Wang and Dr. Robert Lupitskyy for their help. The authors also thank BASF Global for their kind donation of PF127.
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