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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Tumor-Targeting, MicroRNA-Silencing Porous Silicon Nanoparticles for Ovarian Cancer Therapy.

  • Author(s): Bertucci, Alessandro
  • Kim, Kang-Hoon
  • Kang, Jinyoung
  • Zuidema, Jonathan M
  • Lee, Seo Hyeon
  • Kwon, Ester J
  • Kim, Dokyoung
  • Howell, Stephen B
  • Ricci, Francesco
  • Ruoslahti, Erkki
  • Jang, Hyeung-Jin
  • Sailor, Michael J
  • et al.

Silencing of aberrantly expressed microRNAs (miRNAs or miRs) has emerged as one of the strategies for molecular targeted cancer therapeutics. In particular, miR-21 is an oncogenic miRNA overexpressed in many tumors, including ovarian cancer. To achieve efficient administration of anti-miR therapeutics, delivery systems are needed that can ensure local accumulation in the tumor environment, low systemic toxicity, and reduced adverse side effects. In order to develop an improved anti-miR therapeutic agent for the treatment of ovarian cancer, a nanoformulation is engineered that leverages biodegradable porous silicon nanoparticles (pSiNPs) encapsulating an anti-miR-21 locked nucleic acid payload and displaying a tumor-homing peptide for targeted distribution. Targeting efficacy, miR-21 silencing, and anticancer activity are optimized in vitro on a panel of ovarian cancer cell lines, and a formulation of anti-miR-21 in a pSiNP displaying the targeting peptide CGKRK is identified for in vivo evaluation. When this nanoparticulate agent is delivered to mice bearing tumor xenografts, a substantial inhibition of tumor growth is achieved through silencing of miR-21. This study presents the first successful application of tumor-targeted anti-miR porous silicon nanoparticles for the treatment of ovarian cancer in a mouse xenograft model.

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