Functional Single-Chain Polymer Nanoparticles: Targeting and Imaging Pancreatic Tumors in Vivo.

PMID 27608431


The development of tools for the early diagnosis of pancreatic adenocarcinoma is an urgent need in order to increase treatment success rate and reduce patient mortality. Here, we present a modular nanosystem platform integrating soft nanoparticles with a targeting peptide and an active imaging agent for diagnostics. Biocompatible single-chain polymer nanoparticles (SCPNs) based on poly(methacrylic acid) were prepared and functionalized with the somatostatin analogue PTR86 as the targeting moiety, since somatostatin receptors are overexpressed in pancreatic cancer. The gamma emitter (67)Ga was incorporated by chelation and allowed in vivo investigation of the pharmacokinetic properties of the nanoparticles using single photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT). The resulting engineered nanosystem was tested in a xenograph mouse model of human pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Imaging results demonstrate that accumulation of targeted SCPNs in the tumor is higher than that observed for nontargeted nanoparticles due to improved retention in this tissue.

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