EXCLI journal

Cellular uptake and anti-tumor activity of gemcitabine conjugated with new amphiphilic cell penetrating peptides.

PMID 28694765


Gemcitabine (Gem) is used as a single agent or in combination with other anticancer agents to treat many types of solid tumors. However, it has many limitations such as a short plasma half-life, dose-limiting toxicities and drug resistance. Cell-penetrating peptides (CPPs) are short peptides which may deliver a large variety of cargo molecules into the cancerous cells. The current study was designed to evaluate the antiproliferative activity of gemcitabine chemically conjugated to CPPs. The peptides were synthesized using solid phase synthesis procedure. The uptake efficiency of CPPs into cells was examined by flow cytometry and fluorescent microscopy. The synthesized peptides were chemically conjugated to Gem and the in vitro cytotoxicity of conjugates was tested by MTT assay on A594 cell line. According to the obtained results, cellular uptake was increased with increasing the concentration of CPPs. On the other hand the coupling of Gem with peptides containing block sequence of arginine (R5W3R4) and some alternating sequences (i.e. [RW]6 and [RW]3) exhibited improved antitumor activity of the drug. The findings in this study support the advantages of using cell-penetrating peptides for improving intracellular delivery of Gem into tumor as well as its activity.

Related Materials

Product #



Molecular Formula

Add to Cart

O-(Benzotriazol-1-yl)-N,N,N′,N′-tetramethyluronium tetrafluoroborate, ≥97.0% (N)