Diagnostic and therapeutic evaluation of folate-targeted paclitaxel and vinorelbine encapsulating theranostic liposomes for non-small cell lung cancer

Karpuz M., Silindir-Gunay M., Ozer A. Y., Ozturk S. C., Yanik H., Tuncel M., ...More

EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF PHARMACEUTICAL SCIENCES, vol.156, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 156
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.ejps.2020.105576
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, BIOSIS, CAB Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, EMBASE, International Pharmaceutical Abstracts, MEDLINE, Veterinary Science Database
  • Keywords: Theranostic approach, non-small cell lung cancer, folate-targeted, combination therapy, CO-DELIVERY, BIODISTRIBUTION, NANOPARTICLES, AGENT, TPGS
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


NSCLC is the most common type of lung cancer. However, non-specific contrast agents, radiopharmaceuticals, and treatment methods are insufficient in early diagnosis and eradication of all tumor tissue. Therefore, the formulation of a novel, targeted, specific theranostic agents possess critical importance. In our previous study, paclitaxel and vinorelbine encapsulating, Tc-99m radiolabeled, folate targeted, nanosized liposomes were formulated and found promising due to characterization properties, high cellular uptake, and cytotoxicity. In this study, in vivo therapeutic and diagnostic efficacy of liposomal formulations were tested by biodistribution study, evaluation of tumor growth inhibition, and histopathologic examination after in vitro assays on LLC1 cells. Both actively and passively targeted liposomal formulations exhibited high cellular uptake, and co-drug encapsulating liposomes showed a greater cytotoxicity profiles than free drug combination in LLC1 cells. By the results of biodistribution studies performed in NSCLC tumor-bearing C57BL/6 mice, the uptake of radiolabeled, actively folate targeted, co-drug encapsulating liposomal formulation was found to be higher in tumor tissue when compared to non-actively targeted one. Also, more effective treatment was achieved by using folate-targeted, co-drug encapsulating liposomal formulation when compared to free drugs combination according to changes in tumor size of mice. Furthermore, liposomal formulations showed lower toxicity compared to free drug combinations in the toxicity study considering body weight. Moreover, according to the histopathological study, folate targeted, co-drug encapsulating liposomes not only inhibited the tumor growth effectively but also restricted the lung metastasis entirely.