Drug Delivery System Based on pH-Sensitive Biocompatible Poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) Nanomicelles Loaded with Curcumin and 5-Fluorouracil
Smart polymeric micelles (PMs) are of practical interest as nanocarriers for the encapsulation and controlled release of hydrophobic drugs. Two hydrophobic drugs, naturally-based curcumin (Cur) and synthetic 5-fluorouracil (5-FU), were loaded into the PMs formed by a well-defined pH-sensitive poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) (P2VP90-b-PEO398) block copolymer. The influence of the drug loading on the micellar sizes was investigated by dynamic light scattering (DLS) and it appears that the size of the PMs increases from around 60 to 100 nm when Cur is loaded. On the contrary, the loading of the 5-FU has a smaller effect on the micellar sizes. This difference can be attributed to higher molar mass of Cur with respect to 5-FU but also to higher loading efficiency of Cur, 6.4%, compared to that of 5-FU, 5.8%.
In vitro drug release was studied at pH 2, 6.8, and 7.4, and it was observed that the pH controls the release of both drugs. At pH 2, where the P2VP sequences from the “frozen-in” micellar core are protonated, the drug release efficiencies exceed 90%. Moreover, it was demonstrated, by in vitro assays, that these PMs are hemocompatible and biocompatible. Furthermore, the PMs protect the Cur against the photo-degradation, whereas the non-ionic PEO corona limits the adsorption of bovine serum albumin (BSA) protein on the surface. This study demonstrates that these pH-sensitive PMs are suitable for practical utilization as human-safe and smart, injectable drug delivery systems.
Iurciuc-Tincu, C.-E.; Cretan, M.S.; Purcar, V.; Popa, M.; Daraba, O.M.; Atanase, L.I.; Ochiuz, L. Drug Delivery System Based on pH-Sensitive Biocompatible Poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-b-poly(ethylene oxide) Nanomicelles Loaded with Curcumin and 5-Fluorouracil. Polymers 2020, 12, 1450.
Keywords: pH-sensitive micelles; poly(2-vinyl pyridine)-b-poly(ethylene oxide); curcumin; 5-fluorouracil; hemocompatible; biocompatible