International journal of nanomedicine

Design of multifunctional magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles/mitoxantrone-loaded liposomes for both magnetic resonance imaging and targeted cancer therapy.

PMID 25187709


Tumor-targeting multifunctional liposomes simultaneously loaded with magnetic iron oxide nanoparticles (MIONs) as a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) contrast agent and anticancer drug, mitoxantrone (Mit), were developed for targeted cancer therapy and ultrasensitive MRI. The gonadorelin-functionalized MION/Mit-loaded liposome (Mit-GML) showed significantly increased uptake in luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone (LHRH) receptor overexpressing MCF-7 (Michigan Cancer Foundation-7) breast cancer cells over a gonadorelin-free MION/Mit-loaded liposome (Mit-ML) control, as well as in an LHRH receptor low-expressing Sloan-Kettering HER2 3+ Ovarian Cancer (SK-OV-3) cell control, thereby leading to high cytotoxicity against the MCF-7 human breast tumor cell line. The Mit-GML formulation was more effective and less toxic than equimolar doses of free Mit or Mit-ML in the treatment of LHRH receptors overexpressing MCF-7 breast cancer xenografts in mice. Furthermore, the Mit-GML demonstrated much higher T2 enhancement than did Mit-ML controls in vivo. Collectively, the study indicates that the integrated diagnostic and therapeutic design of Mit-GML nanomedicine potentially allows for the image-guided, target-specific treatment of cancer.