John Garner

mPEG-PLGA from PolySciTech used in development of combination chemotherapy nanoparticles for treatment of lung cancer

Blog Post created by John Garner on Dec 18, 2017

Zhang, 2017 nanoparticles lung cancer treatment.JPG

Lung cancer is a prevalent and deadly disease contributing to about 222,500 new cases and 155,870 deaths per year in America alone. Lung cancer propagates itself through cancer stem-cells, cells within cancer which can differentiate into multiple cell types. Treating the cancer requires both eliminating the mature cancer cells and the stem-cells, so that the cancer cannot grow back. Recently, researchers at Xiangyang Central Hospital and Second Military Medical University (China) used mPEG-PLGA (PolyVivo AK101) from PolySciTech ( to generate salinomycin and gefitinib loaded nanoparticles for lung cancer treatment. This research holds promise to develop more effective treatment strategies for this disease by eliminating both cancer cells and cancer stem cells. Read more: Zhang, Yu, Qi Zhang, Jing Sun, Huijie Liu, and Qingfeng Li. "The combination therapy of salinomycin and gefitinib using poly (D, L-lactic-co-glycolic acid)-poly (ethylene glycol) nanoparticles for targeting both lung cancer stem cells and cancer cells." OncoTargets and therapy 10 (2017): 5653.


  “Abstract: Purpose: Lung cancer (LC) is the leading cause of cancer death worldwide. Evidences suggest that both LC cancer stem cells (CSCs) and cancer cells are supposed to be eliminated to achieve superior treatment effect against LC. Salinomycin could eradiate CSCs in various types of cancers, and gefitinib is a first-line therapy in LC. The purpose of the present study was to develop salinomycin-loaded nanoparticles (salinomycin-NPs) combined with gefitinib-loaded nanoparticles (gefitinib-NPs) to eradicate both LC CSCs and cancer cells. Methods: Salinomycin and gefitinib were encapsulated separately by poly(d,l-lactic-co-glycolic acid)-poly(ethylene glycol) nanoparticles by the emulsion/solvent evaporation approach. The anti-LC activity of salinomycin-NPs and gefitinib-NPs was investigated. Results: Salinomycin-NPs and gefitinib-NPs are of ~140 nm in size, high drug encapsulation efficacy and sustained release of drugs. CD133+ LC CSCs showed the characteristics of CSCs, including significantly enhanced stem cell gene expression, tumorsphere formation ability, and tumorigenicity in mice. Both salinomycin and salinomycin-NPs are capable of selectively inhibiting LC CSCs, as reflected by their enhanced cytotoxic effects toward CD133+ LC CSCs and ability to reduce tumorsphere formation in LC cell lines, whereas gefitinib and gefitinib-NPs could significantly inhibit LC cells. Salinomycin-NPs and salinomycin could reduce the population of LC CSCs in the tumors in vivo. It is noteworthy that salinomycin-NPs combined with gefitinib-NPs inhibited the growth of tumors more efficiently compared with salinomycin combined with gefitinib or single salinomycin-NPs or gefitinib-NPs. Conclusion: Salinomycin-NPs combined with gefitinib-NPs represent a potential approach for LC by inhibiting both LC CSCs and cancer cells. Keywords: cancer stem cells, lung cancer, nanoparticles, salinomycin, gefitinib”