Theranostics 2020; 10(7):3325-3339. doi:10.7150/thno.41228

Research Paper

Bioinspired tumor-homing nanoplatform for co-delivery of paclitaxel and siRNA-E7 to HPV-related cervical malignancies for synergistic therapy

Cong Xu1,2, Wan Liu1,2, Yuan Hu1,2, Weiping Li1,2✉, Wen Di1,2✉

1. Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200127, People's Republic of China.
2. Shanghai Key Laboratory of Gynecologic Oncology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai 200127, People's Republic of China.

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Citation:
Xu C, Liu W, Hu Y, Li W, Di W. Bioinspired tumor-homing nanoplatform for co-delivery of paclitaxel and siRNA-E7 to HPV-related cervical malignancies for synergistic therapy. Theranostics 2020; 10(7):3325-3339. doi:10.7150/thno.41228. Available from http://www.thno.org/v10p3325.htm

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Abstract

Because of the complexity of cancer, a combination of chemotherapy and gene therapy is an emerging treatment modality. To realize the full potential of this strategy, a smart, highly biocompatible nanosystem that enables the precise co-delivery of small-molecule anticancer drugs and small interfering RNA (siRNA) is urgently needed. This study aimed to improve the therapeutic effect against cervical cancer by using cancer cell membrane-camouflaged nanoparticles for simultaneous delivery of paclitaxel (PTX) and siRNA targeting E7.

Methods: By camouflaging HeLa cell membranes onto siRNA/PTX co-loaded (lactic-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticles, a biomimetic dual-drug delivery system (Si/PNPs@HeLa) was developed to simultaneously deliver PTX and siRNA targeting E7. After evaluating the physicochemical characteristics as well as their cell uptake and biodistribution behavior, studies on the RNA interference efficiency and antitumor ability of Si/PNPs@HeLa in vitro and in vivo were further carried out.

Results: The Si/PNPs@HeLa was capable of delivering PTX and siRNA simultaneously to HeLa cells both in vitro and in vivo. Moreover, benefiting from the recognition and adhesion molecules on the surface of HeLa cells, Si/PNPs@HeLa exhibited an improved immune escape ability and an increased tumor region accumulation (3-fold higher than bare nanoparticles). As a result, an excellent synergistic anti-tumor effect was observed in the HeLa tumor-bearing mice, with tumor volume inhibiting rates of 83.6% and no side effects in major organs. The mechanistic studies confirmed that E7 knockdown sensitized HeLa cells to PTX chemotherapy, mainly by inhibiting PTX-induced AKT pathway activation.

Conclusion: Si/PNPs@HeLa, by integrating immune escape and tumor-homing ability, can serve as an efficient dual-drug delivery system to achieve precise treatment of cervical cancer through chemo-gene combined therapy.

Keywords: cancer cell membrane camouflage, homotypic targeting, paclitaxel, siRNA-E7, cervical cancer