Selective growth inhibition of cancer cells with doxorubicin-loaded CB[7]-modified iron-oxide nanoparticles

F. Benyettou, H. Fahs, R. Elkharrag, R. A. Bilbeisi, B. Asma, R. Rezgui, L. Motte, M. Magzoub, J. Brandel, J. C. Olsen, F. Piano, K. C. Gunsalus, C. Platas-Iglesias, A. Trabolsi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cucurbit[7]uril-modified iron-oxide nanoparticles (CB[7]NPs) were loaded with doxorubicin hydrochloride (Dox) and tested as a drug delivery system. Dox was found to interact with the carbonyl-rich rims of the CB[7] macrocycles adsorbed on the surface of the nanoparticles. The Dox-loaded nanoparticles (Dox@CB[7]NPs) were stable at room temperature and physiological pH and released their Dox cargo under acidic conditions, in the presence of glutathione, or with heating. Dox@CB[7]NPs reduced the viability of HeLa and three other cancer-derived cell lines in vitro at lower IC50 than free Dox. They were also nontoxic to C. elegans. The sensitivity of HeLa cells to Dox@CB[7]NPs was enhanced when the temperature was elevated by application of an alternating magnetic field. Thus, Dox@CB[7]NPs show promise as agents for the intracellular delivery of Dox to cancer cells, for the selective and controlled release of the drug, and, more generally, as a possible means of combining chemotherapeutic and hyperthermic treatment modalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)23827-23834
Number of pages8
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number38
StatePublished - 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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