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Nano Research

Article Title

Highly uniform ultrasound-sensitive nanospheres produced by a pH-induced micelle-to-vesicle transition for tumor-targeted drug delivery

Authors

Yiru Wang, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Liver Disease and Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
Tinghui Yin, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Liver Disease and Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
Zhenwei Su, PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
Chen Qiu, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Liver Disease and Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China
Yong Wang, PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
Rongqin Zheng, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Liver Disease and Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China
Meiwan Chen, State Key Laboratory of Quality Research in Chinese Medicine, Institute of Chinese Medical Sciences, University of Macau, Macau 999078, China
Xintao Shuai, Guangdong Provincial Key Lab of Liver Disease and Department of Medical Ultrasonics, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510630, China PCFM Lab of Ministry of Education, School of Materials Science and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China

Keywords

micelle, polymersome, morphological transition, ultrasound-sensitive, tumor-penetrating delivery

Abstract

ABSTRACT Although gas-filled microbubbles with high echogenicity are widely applied in clinical ultrasonography, the micron scale particle size impedes their use in the treatment of solid tumors, which are accessible to objects less than several hundred nanometers. We herein propose an unusual approach involving a pH-induced core–shell micelle-to-vesicle transition to prepare ultrasound-sensitive polymeric nanospheres (polymersomes in structure) possessing multiple features, including nanosize, monodispersity, and incorporation of a phasetransitional imaging agent into the aqueous lumen. These features are not achievable via the conventional double-emulsion method for polymersome preparation. The nanospheres were constructed based on a novel triblock copolymer with dual pH sensitivity. The liquid-to-gas phase transition of the imaging agent induced by external low-frequency ultrasound may destroy the nanospheres for a rapid drug release, with simultaneous tissue-penetrating drug delivery inside a tumor. These effects may provide new opportunities for the development of an effective cancer therapy with few adverse effects.

Graphical Abstract

Publisher

Tsinghua University Press

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