Pectin coated nanostructured lipid carriers for targeted piperine delivery to hepatocellular carcinoma

Piperine (PIP) is a herbal drug with well-known anticancer activity against different types of cancer including hepatocellular carcinoma. However, low aqueous solubility and extensive first-pass metabolism limit its clinical use. In this study, positively charged PIP-loaded nanostructured lipid carriers (PIP-NLCs) were prepared via melt-emulsification and ultra-sonication method followed by pectin coating to get novel pectin-coated NLCs (PIP-P-NLCs) targeting hepatocellular carcinoma. Complete in vitro characterization was performed. In addition, cytotoxicity and cellular uptake of nanosystems in HepG2 cells were evaluated.

Finally, in vivo anticancer activity was tested in the diethylnitrosamine-induced hepatocellular carcinoma mice model. Successful pectin coating was confirmed by an increased particle size of PIP-NLCs from 150.28 ± 2.51 nm to 205.24 ± 5.13 nm and revered Zeta potential from 33.34 ± 3.52 mV to −27.63 ± 2.05 mV. Nanosystems had high entrapment efficiency, good stability, spherical shape, and sustained drug release over 24 h. Targeted P-NLCs enhanced the cytotoxicity and cellular uptake compared to untargeted NLCs. Furthermore, PIP-P-NLCs improved in vivo anticancer effect of PIP as proved by histological examination of liver tissues, suppression of liver enzymes and oxidative stress environment in the liver, and alteration of cell cycle regulators. To conclude, PIP-P-NLCs can act as a promising approach for targeted delivery of PIP to hepatocellular carcinoma.

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Eman M.M. Shehata, Mennatallah A. Gowayed, Samar O. El-Ganainy, Eman Sheta, Yosra S.R. Elnaggar, Ossama Y. Abdallah,
Pectin coated nanostructured lipid carriers for targeted piperine delivery to hepatocellular carcinoma,
International Journal of Pharmaceutics, Volume 619, 2022, 121712, ISSN 0378-5173,

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